Major New Investments to Boost Tourism Industry in Clearwater, Florida
September 17, 2012
More than 600 new hotel rooms and a multimillion dollar investment at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, spurred by the upcoming major motion picture, Dolphin Tale, have been announced by the City of Clearwater. The city is also celebrating recent improvements to the Pinellas hiking and biking trail, Jolley Trolley transportation service, and the completion of the Clearwater Harbor Marina.
The City of Clearwater is already home to a great variety of accommodations, including top luxury resorts, family friendly condos, budget motels and everything in between, providing options to fit any traveler. This already extensive selection is set to expand even further with the addition of rooms at existing properties as well as new construction and renovations. A number of existing hotels and motels are currently undergoing refurbishments and expansion, while the brand new Frenchy’s Oasis Motel opened in January 2011.
The Clearwater Marine Aquarium, which has been a visitor favorite for years, is now undergoing a $10 million expansion thanks to the upcoming Warner Brothers’ feature film starring its most famous resident, Winter the dolphin, alongside Ashley Judd, Morgan Freeman, and Harry Connick Jr. The 3D family blockbuster is set entirely in Clearwater, so fans will be able to visit the places they see on the screen and, most importantly, meet Winter. The aquarium received a special facelift for its big screen debut and is now undergoing major expansion to accommodate the influx of tourists poised to visit the landmark.
The Pinellas Trail, which is a resident and visitor hotspot and winds through the city, has recently undergone renovations and enhancements. The trail was remapped, making it an ideal place for walking, hiking, biking, running, rollerblading, skateboarding and even dog-walking.
The Jolley Trolley has long been a Clearwater favorite as the historic and charming trolleys have been transporting customers of all kinds around the beach for years. Recently, however, the independent, non-profit service has expanded its routes to include not only the Clearwater area but also Dunedin and Tarpon Springs. Single rides are just $2 and the expansion provides seamless connections with the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) public transportations allowing riders to get virtually anywhere in the county.
In addition to projects on land, Clearwater is taking to the water as well. In order to make the city more accessible to boaters, construction was recently completed on a new marina on the downtown side of the harbor. The Clearwater Harbor Marina now provides 126 permanent slips, more than 1,500 feet of side-tie overnight docks, and 650 feet of side-tie docking for daily use just steps away from Clearwater’s emerging downtown shops and restaurants and Coachman Park. Coachman Park is home to many of Clearwater’s exciting community events including a number of concerts and festivals, such as the Clearwater Jazz Holiday. Indeed the whole downtown Cleveland Street District is comfortably enjoyed just a short distance from docked vessels.
The City of Clearwater boasts magnificent sugar white sand beaches, gorgeous year round weather and enough activities to keep even the most restless traveler happily occupied. These recent improvements are just the latest additions to one of Florida’s most tourist friendly locations.
Clearwater is an ideal destination for travelers of all ages and interests, occupying prime real estate along Florida’s stunning Gulf Coast. As a top, year round location for both leisure and business, Clearwater boasts an endless supply of sun, warm weather, great dining and shopping, along with extensive outdoor activities both on land and at sea. Clearwater Beach is consistently ranked among America’s most beautiful and the city is also home to a wide variety of sporting and music events, including Philadelphia Phillies Spring Training and the annual Clearwater Jazz Holiday.