NYC and Berlin are now tourism partners, reflecting how similar the two cities are as top destinations for theater, art, food, architecture, nightlife, history, multi-cultural experiences, a creative vibe, and also the importance to one another for tourism.
More than 600,000 tourists from Germany visit New York City each year, many of them from Berlin. And New Yorkers return the favor. Germany welcomed nearly 500,000 visitors from the USA, including visitors to Berlin.
The ground-breaking city-to-city agreement includes sharing ideas in marketing and managing tourism, including promoting neighborhoods outside core downtown areas and most famous attractions that most tourists focus on, such as Times Square and the Statue of Liberty in NYC, and the Brandenburg Gate and the Berlin Wall in Berlin.
November 2019 is the 30th anniversary of the Fall of the Wall, which famously divided the city, and Berlin expects one million visitors to help celebrate.
The NYC-Berlin partnership also will share strategies for sustainability and responsible tourism management, including by integrating art and design students. The partnership is working with students at ArtCenter College of Design on an innovative TestLab project to propose design solutions for tourists of the future.
The partnership was announced at a news conference in NYC attended by a Deputy Mayor of Berlin and the heads of both Berlin’s tourism marketing group, VisitBerlin, and NYC & Company, New York City’s tourism marketing group.
NYCOTC Editor Evelyn Kanter attended
“New York City and Berlin are world-class destinations that share so much in common—from outstanding culture, attractions, entertainment, nightlife and events to beautiful, multicultural neighborhoods to navigate and explore, the two cities have extraordinary appeal. We’re so pleased to formalize our partnership with our friends at visitBerlin after many years of conversation and informal collaboration,” said NYC & Company president and CEO Fred Dixon.
“We are excited to sign this first-ever tourism cooperation agreement between Berlin and New York City, both outstanding destinations that have unique appeal and showcase the best of what each country has to offer. We are eager to exchange experiences, learn from each other, and develop intensive out-of-the-box ideas with the TestLab students to develop new opportunities that benefit both visitors and residents alike,” said Burkhard Kieker, CEO of visitBerlin.
“New York City and Berlin stand for internationality, diversity, cosmopolitanism and freedom. Our cities attract people from all over the world, bring new ideas in and support economic development. Making Berlin an even more attractive and enjoyable experience for visitors goes hand in hand with increasing the quality of life for residents. Sustainability as a maxim for action to ensure Berlin tourism continues to develop in a way compatible for the city, economically, ecologically and socially. I am very happy to see a commitment to deepen the cooperation between our agencies NYC & Company and visitBerlin—especially on key questions of sustainable tourism, for the benefits of New York City and Berlin citizens,” said Ramona Pop, Deputy Mayor and Senator for Economics, Energy and Public Enterprises of Berlin
Berlin tourism highlights
VisitBerlin’s Kieker also said that “after being cut off for so long by two dictatorships” – referring to the Nazis and then the Soviets – Berlin is “delighted to have guests”, and busy building new attractions and expanding its calendar of events.
This year alone, Berlin opened Futurium (House of Futures) and the James Simon Gallery, which will become the gateway to UNESCO World Heritage Site Museum Island.
It’s also the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus archiecture With the 30th anniversary of the Fall of the Wall, Berlin will be organizing a global event expected to attract over one million visitors to the city this November.
In 2020, the Humboldt Forum and the reconstructed Berlin City Palace are set to open, along with the the highly anticipated new international Berlin Brandenburg Airport.
In 2018, Berlin was one of Europe’s top three travel destinations after London and Paris, with the US being its biggest overseas market.
Berlin welcomed 451,887 American travelers in 2018, who spent a record 1,273,627 overnights in the city, a five percent increase over the previous year. The trend continues in 2019: from January until June, Berlin saw another 11.2 percent increase in American overnight stays.
New York City encourages visitors to experience what NYC & Company is calling a “Monumental Year”.
2019 has been extraordinary for New York City tourism, defined by major new developments and openings as well as iconic big events and cultural activities.
The “new” Museum of Modern Art will reopen on October 21 with expanded new galleries and spaces for performance and events.
And this past June, New York City hosted WorldPride—the first time the international LGBTQ+ celebration was held in the United States. This special event coincided with the historic 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and welcomed approximately 5 million people to the City.
The news conference was at the German Consulate, across First Avenue from the United Nations.