NewsPalm Beach CountyRegion S Palm Beach CountyDelray Beach


As Visitor Information Center welcomes fewer people, so do businesses

DDA estimates about $2.7 million in lost tourism revenue in November
Delray Beach Visitor Information Center
Posted at 5:31 PM, Dec 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-22 08:51:41-05

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — Café Luna Rosa has been in Delray Beach since 1993. The popular tourist spot suffered, like so many others, because of COVID-19.

"Losing July Fourth this year was horrible for us," restaurant partner Bonnie Beer said.

Beer said the help from the local community has helped keep the doors open.

Just around the corner from Café Luna Rosa is the city's Visitor Information Center. It's been operated by the Downtown Development Authority since 2005.

Cafe Luna Rosa sign
Cafe Luna Rosa has been in Delray Beach since 1993.

Laura Simon, executive director of the DDA, said 2,000 people stopped in at the visitor center in November 2019. Last month, however, only 400 people stopped in.

Simon said the DDA estimates every person who stops into the Visitor Information Center will spend about $1,400 in Delray Beach, which equates to about $2.7 million in lost revenue for the month of November.

"Still numbers that will take a long time for us to make up," she said.

Simon said the $2.7 million is just from the Visitor Information Center. She said the losses could be worse.

The DDA is seeing shifts from where people are traveling to Delray Beach.

"It has opened up a lot for Floridians to travel within the state," Beer said.

Bonnie Beer, partner at Cafe Luna Rosa
"It has opened up a lot for Floridians to travel within the state," Cafe Luna Rosa Bonnie Beer says of the changing trend in tourism.

Beer said, so far, December has been a busier month for business.

"Coming into this week should be one of our busiest weeks of the year normally," Beer said.

Simon said the DDA and city are working on finding ways to drive traffic to businesses in 2021.

"We will look at creating some outside programming," she said.