Visit Newport Beach Honored for Best Public Relations Campaign for a Destination in California

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L to R: Julie Coker, President and CEO of San Diego Tourism Authority; Erin Rose, Senior Brand Director of Visit Newport Beach; Gary Sherwin, CEO & President Visit Newport Beach; Ashley Johnson, CMO & SVP of Visit Newport Beach; Caroline Beteta, President & CEO of Visit California.

Visit California, the state’s marketing and destination organization, honored tourism destinations and attractions across California for excellence in tourism marketing and destination stewardship at the organization’s biennial Poppy Awards, held on March 12 at the Westin Rancho Mirage Golf Resort & Spa.

Visit Newport Beach was selected as the winner in the Best Public Relations for a Destination category for its “Big Game Getaway” campaign.

When Super Bowl LVII was held to Glendale, Arizona in 2023, Visit Newport Beach saw an opportunity when Arizona residents began listing their homes on short-term rental sites as a way to make substantial money and get out of town to avoid the crowds.

With a short lead time, Visit Newport Beach decided to lure those residents to Newport Beach with a targeted campaign called “Big Game Getaway.”

Visit Newport Beach joined with its hotel, restaurant and recreational partners to collaborate and curate exclusive Super Bowl-themed packages and experiences to entice Arizonans to travel during the month of February.

The results: Rooms booked increased three percent year over year, and website traffic from Arizona tripled in under a month. Nearly 400 pieces of editorial coverage resulted in 200 million media impressions and one million social media impressions, plus a 502% digital website growth from Phoenix.

“We are extremely honored to receive Visit California’s Poppy Award for Best Public Relations Campaign,” said Gary Sherwin, President & CEO of Visit Newport Beach. “Our ‘Big Game Getaway’ campaign exemplifies our commitment to creating innovative and dynamic marketing campaigns within the tourism industry. This recognition underscores the success of our marketing team’s efforts in showcasing Newport Beach as a desirable destination year-round, and we are thrilled to continue inspiring travelers to experience the charm and excitement of our coastal destination.”

A panel of industry marketing experts selected the winners of the Poppy Awards in nine categories, awarding winners in both business and destination categories.

Outlook Forum is the premier travel industry conference for California, the No. 1 tourism destination in the United States. Outlook Forum brings together C-suite executives and industry decision-makers from California’s hotels, rental cars, attractions, restaurants, retailers and other travel businesses, as well as representatives from Visit California’s global network of offices.

Founded in January 2013, Newport Beach & Company is a non-profit organization established to serve as the official marketing agency for the city of Newport Beach. The agency brings together all of the marketing entities connected to the Newport Beach brand and is designed to oversee separate business units that include Visit Newport Beach, Celebrate Newport Beach, Enterprise Newport Beach and Newport Beach TV. For more information, please go to



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