Featured Press Releases

Use this library of press releases written by the Charleston Area CVB media relations department to mine for story ideas, stay abreast of what is new in the destination and learn about the special events that take place throughout the year.

For additional story ideas, we invite you to visit our blog at www.charlestonly.com.

Charleston, South Carolina Named World's Best City and No. 1 City in the U.S. and Canada by Travel + Leisure 2016 World's Best Awards

For Immediate Release, July 2016

CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA (July 6, 2016) – For the first time, readers of Travel + Leisure magazine have voted Charleston, South Carolina the World’s Best City in the 2016 World’s Best Awards. Charleston is the first domestic destination to earn the coveted World’s Best City ranking, and for the fourth consecutive year, the readers of Travel + Leisure ranked the Charleston area the No. 1 City in the U.S. and Canada. The news was shared by Jacqui Gifford, Senior Editor of Travel + Leisure, on the TODAY Show on July 6.

Charleston exceeded other destinations in the categories of sights/landmarks, culture/arts, restaurants/food, people/friendliness, shopping and value to earn the World’s Best City and the No. 1 City in the U.S. and Canada designation, scoring 91.66 overall. The complete results of the 2016 World’s Best Awards Survey are featured on TravelAndLeisure.com/WorldsBest and in the August issue of the magazine, on newsstands July 15.

Travel + Leisure Editor Nathan Lump said, “Charleston is a remarkably dynamic place, so it's no surprise that it has achieved its highest ranking ever in our survey as this year's best city in the world. The city has managed to preserve all the qualities for which it is widely known—a prime coastal setting, historic architecture, friendly locals—while also nurturing a creative culture that is making it one of the most notable destinations for those who seek out interesting restaurants, bars, and shops that highlight a dedication to distinctive craft.”

The No. 1 rankings continue to positively impact tourism, the number one economic driver to the Charleston area. Since 2012, the first year Charleston was awarded the No. 1 City in the U.S. and Canada ranking in the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards, the total economic impact of tourism has increased 14% to $3.68 billion in 2015 according the Office of Tourism Analysis at the College of Charleston. Additionally, the average expenditure per adult and the total labor earnings has increased.

Dan Blumenstock, Chairman of the Charleston Area Convention & Visitors Bureau and Director of Hotel Operations of Fennell Holdings remarked, “Readers of Travel + Leisure continue to recognize our destination for its friendly people, renowned cuisine, historic landmarks, flourishing arts community, and celebrated shopping scene. This award is a testament to the vitality of Charleston as a world class destination.” Blumenstock added, “The area’s tourism and hospitality community has enjoyed positive growth over the past four years, due in part to the numerous awards bestowed on the Charleston area. We look forward to continued and responsible economic impact as a result of the No. 1 City in the World ranking.”

In addition to the No. 1 City rankings, The Spectator Hotel, located in historic Charleston, was recognized as the No. 1 Top City Hotel in the U.S.

Michael Tall, President & Chief Operating Officer of Charlestowne Hotels stated, "The Spectator was designed, and is operated, with our discerning guests' needs and desires for a unique, curated experience. With the hotel only having opened less than a year ago, we are truly honored to be recognized by the readers of Travel + Leisure as the No. 1 Top City Hotel in the 2016 World's Best Awards in the categories of rooms and facilities, service, location, value, and design."  

Travel + Leisure readers voted on their favorite hotels, cities, islands, spas, cruise lines, airlines, tour outfitters, and car-rental agencies. The 2016 World’s Best Awards readers’ survey results (listed by overall and regional rankings) and survey methodology are featured in the August issue of Travel + Leisure magazine, online at: TravelAndLeisure.com/WorldsBest, and in the World’s Best Awards 2016.
Follow the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2016 conversation with #tlworldsbest.


The mission of the Charleston Area Convention and Visitors Bureau is to unify and lead the local travel industry in marketing the Charleston area as an individual, meeting, incentive and group destination to both the domestic and international markets.

High Resolution photography available upon request.  

Sign Up To Access Favorites

Login to Access Your Favorites

No Account Yet? Sign Up & Plan Your Trip


Share Your Favorites


Would you like a free, 240 page, full color Charleston Visitors Guide mailed to your home?

Published annually, the official Charleston Visitors Guide is full of gorgeous photography, insider tips, maps, and resources to help you plan your Charleston vacation.

No, thanks. Yes, please! ×

Published annually, the official Charleston Area Visitors Guide is full of gorgeous photography, insider tips, maps, and resources to help you plan your Charleston vacation.

Published annually, the official Charleston Area Visitors Guide is full of gorgeous photography, insider tips, maps, and resources to help you plan your Charleston vacation.