The tourism bureau of St. Louis is hosting a convention full of tourism bureau officials

"They are accustomed to seeing the best of the cities they travel to, so we need to do this right!"

Alex Degman
July 23, 2019 - 8:48 am

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — More than 1,500 people responsible for planning conventions and tourism around the world are in St. Louis to see what it has to offer.

America's Center is hosting the Destinations International Convention for the first time.

"A large proportion of them are global travelers," Explore St. Louis President Kitty Ratcliffe told KMOX. "And they are accustomed to seeing the best of the cities they travel to, so we need to do this right!"

Ratcliffe says St. Louis is ground zero this week for the industry's major influencers.

"All of those senior-level people from those organizations are here as well as every trade press (is sending a) representative."

Ratcliffe says she's excited to talk about future upgrades to the center -- attendees will see the need firsthand when their general session happens in an exhibit hall instead of a ballroom.

Explore St. Louis will also show off momentum downtown -- including Ballpark Village, Union Station and the renovated Gateway Arch grounds.

Ratcliffe says the group booked the convention sight unseen, so they didn't know their large general session would be held in an exhibit room instead of a ballroom.