Wine tourism is critical to wine industry profitability. As just one example, a survey conducted by Silicon Valley Bank found 45% of wine revenue in Napa County comes from direct sales, much of that from tasting rooms. On the flip side, more visitors to wineries also leads to increased profitability for related hotels, restaurants, tour operators, and other local businesses.
The Wine Tourism Conference serves two needs: 1) It provides hard information about the important and growing industry of wine tourism that you can bring home to both grow and improve your local wine tourism offerings and 2) It provides a forum for meeting your fellow leaders in the wine tourism industry. The conference will appeal to:
- Wineries that would like to increase the number of visitors to their winery and improve cellar door sales
- Wine and tourism associations and CVBs who are tasked to increase the number of butts in seats, bodies in beds, and inquiring minds at area attractions
- Tour operators, travel agencies, transportation companies, and event planners who provide wine tourism offerings to the public
- Hotels and restaurants that are located in wine areas around the world
- Public relations professionals and other consultants to the wine and tourism industries
- Academics and students from university wine business programs
- Media and bloggers who write about wine and tourism
What can you expect to get out of the conference?
- An overview of the current state of wine tourism from our keynote speakers and industry panels
- Specific, useful information you can use in subjects such as social media, digital marketing, staffing, technology, tasting room management, and more from our breakout sessions and pre-conference workshops
- Networking opportunities during sessions and at lunches, dinners, and receptions
- An opportunity to pour your wine at our Wednesday evening reception if you are one of the first 40 non-profit or governmental winery associations or CVBs registered to attend
- Two lunches and one dinner included in the conference price
- An introduction to the local host wine region including optional extra activities and meals, including excursions for friends and families joining you
The 2016 Wine Tourism Conference will take place in Fredericksburg in the Texas Hill Country. The facts about the Texas wine industry and wine tourism are impressive:
- Texas has 3,500 acres of vineyards and 350 bonded wineries according to the Texas Wine & Grape Growers Association (TWiGGA)
- The Texas wine industry has a $1.9 billion annual impact a third of that is due to wine tourism
- There are around 900,000 wine-related tourists in the state each year
- Texas was recently selected as a Top Ten Wine Travel destination in the world by Wine Enthusiast Magazine
- While neither Texans nor we think the comparison is apt, both Southern Living Magazine and CNN have called Texas “the next Napa”
Host Hotel and Room Block Information
We will be using two hotels in Fredericksburg for both the conference and sleeping rooms. The hotels are located across the street from each other and you can make your own choice.
- The Inn on Baron’s Creek is offering us a group rate of $119 for standard rooms and $129 for suites from Sunday-Thursday and $149/$169 for Friday and Saturday nights. You must book via phone by calling 866-990-0202 or 830-990-9202.
- The Fredericksburg Inn & Suites is offering us a rate of $119 for Sunday-Thursday and $149 for Friday-Saturday nights. To reserve your room call 800-446-0202 and tell them you are with the WTC.
Arrival and Departure
Fredericksburg is conveniently situated 1.5 hours from Austin International Airport and just over an hour from San Antonio International Airport, so you can check flights to both locations. You can even consider flying to Dallas, which is just four hours away and might have better flights from some locations. You can either rent a car or consider using a shuttle. You will not need a vehicle during the conference (unless you want to venture outside of town) as all transportation for events is provided to those registered.
Airport Shuttle Options:
290 Wine Shuttle 210-724-7217
Majesty Tours 830-456-1883
Hill Country Express 830-997-2190
Events and Meals
The conference includes two lunches (Wednesday and Thursday) at local wineries and one dinner (Wednesday) at Luckenbach Texas. In addition, there are many optional meals and excursions at an additional price, some of which are open to your friends and family members.
For a sample of past agendas, speakers, and sponsors please see our page on Past Conferences.
The Wine Marketing & Tourism Conference is organized by Zephyr Conferences, the organizer of the:
- Beer Marketing & Tourism Conference
- Beer Bloggers & Writers Conference
- BeerNow Conference
- International Food Blogger Conference
- Wine Bloggers Conference
If you would like to host a future blogger conference, please complete a Host Application.
Zephyr Conferences is part of Zephyr Adventures, which has been running active tours around the world for the last 18 years. Please visit our website for information on our active food, wine, and beer tours.
In addition to Zephyr’s active tours, its sister company Taste Vacationsruns wine, beer, food, and spirits tours that leave the physical activity at home. We invite you to join the Taste Vacations Affiliate Program to earn commissions of $300 and more per referral.
We are proud to have an excellent Advisory Board that guides our decisions regarding content and speakers, consisting of the following individuals:
- Ray Johnson, Sonoma State University’s Wine Business Institute
- Nancy Light, Wine Institute
- Colby Smith, Concierge Alliance of Napa Valley and Sonoma
- Nancy Burgner, Touring & Tasting Marketing and Media
- January Wiese, Texas Hill Country Wineries
- Camron King, National Grape & Wine Initiative
- Jackie Saunders, Visit Loudoun