Tampa Bay area tourism is booming

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Officials say tourism is booming in the Tampa Bay area.

For the third straight year, tourists have been arriving in droves on both sides of Tampa Bay.

The Tampa Tribune reports that with a month left in the accounting year, Pinellas County has already surpassed last year’s $31 million record for the 5 percent tax collected on hotel stays. They’ve posted more than $33 million in revenue through August. And Hillsborough County has broken a pre-recession high-water mark, with an annual record of $23.7 million.

Hotels in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Clearwater are renovating and developers are investing millions in upscale lodging.

Florida is enjoying an uptick in tourism across the state. The state’s tourism arm Visit Florida is using its $74 million budget to broaden its marketing.

Republished with permission of the Associated Press.