It is the year that is supposed to have brought bleak tidings for the travel industry, as cash-conscious holidaymakers opt to count the pennies and stay close to home shores.
But it seems that, despite these financially-tricky times, visitors have been rolling into New York.
A fabulous 50: Michael Bloomberg (right) announces New York's landmark figure
Drawn by the bright lights, towering skyscrapers, iconic museums and shopping opportunities of the world’s most famous city, over 50 million people have headed to the Big Apple in the last 12 months, according to figures released this week.
Yesterday saw the Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, announce that the city had breached the 50-million barrier for tourist visits – a rise of 1.5 million on 2010.
These figures leave it as the most popular tourist destination in the United States, with 40 million of those visitors coming from within the US, and 10 million from abroad.
‘New York City’s quality of life has contributed to this great success, and we are confident we will sustain the success of our tourism industry in the months and years ahead,’ Bloomberg commented at a special ceremony to celebrate the landmark statistic.
The Big Apple’s big number has also proved fortuitous for one British couple.
Craig and Lucy Johnson, from Lichfield and Staffordshire, were selected as the honorary 50 millionth visitors after travelling to the US to get married at the ‘Top Of The Rock’ viewing deck – at the summit of the iconic Rockerfeller Center complex.
50 (million) good reasons: New York has enjoyed a boom year
As well as enjoying 850ft-high views of the metropolis as they swapped their vows, the newlyweds have been presented with a ‘Golden Ticket’ to the city worth some $21,000 (£13,500) in gift vouchers, spending money and shopping vouchers.
Then again, New York can afford such gold-plated extravagance. Its plentiful visitor haul over the last 12 months equates to $32billion (£20.5million) in revenue.
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