Tourism Kelowna has been named the province’s Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) of the year at the BC Tourism Industry Awards. Awarded on Thursday, February 28, 2019, Tourism Kelowna received top honours in the category of DMO Professional Excellence; recognizing the organization’s outstanding performance, accountability, and commitment to British Columbia’s tourism industry.

BC Tourism Industry Awards
Members of Tourism Kelowna's team accepting the DMO Professional Excellence award

“To be awarded for DMO Professional Excellence comes with a great deal of pride,” said Thom Killingsworth, Chair, Tourism Kelowna Board of Directors. “As Kelowna continues to see exponential growth, our board and staff remain committed to increasing visitation year-round and producing memorable experiences for guests in market. We’re appreciative of the recognition of our efforts and extend our praise to our local tourism industry for their hard work and support.”

Awarded and presided over by a panel of industry leaders and experts, the recognition reinforces Tourism Kelowna’s past and continued work to elevate the visitor economy in Kelowna and area.

“It was an exciting year for Tourism Kelowna, highlighted by the opening of a new visitor centre but also exceptional thanks to our teams leading the way with creative innovation and our collaboration-first approach,” said Lisanne Ballantyne, President & CEO, Tourism Kelowna. “Our commitment to our local industry was perhaps best displayed by the simultaneous launch of long-term competitiveness strategies and immediate business recovery programs to support stakeholders badly affected by poor summer conditions.”

BC Tourism Industry Awards

Kelowna, and the Okanagan Valley, demonstrated industry leadership in several award categories. Congratulations to:

  • Jan Dobbener, Quails’ Gate Estate Winery, Customer Service Award - Winner
  • Mario Arango Rodriguez, Kelowna Yacht Club, Customer Service Award - Finalist
  • Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association, Innovation Award – Winner (tied with Fishing BC)
  • Accent Inns, Employees First Award - Winner
  • The Paisley Notebook, Remarkable Experience Award – Finalist

About Tourism Kelowna

As the lead destination marketing organization for the Central Okanagan, Tourism Kelowna works on behalf of 400 local businesses and an entire tourism community to generate overnight visitor demand that economically benefits Kelowna and its surrounding areas.

A four-season outdoor playground, Kelowna attracts 2 million visitors annually who in turn generate $337 million in local spending. A vital economic driver for the region, Kelowna’s tourism industry provides 12,000 jobs, $142 million in tax revenue and generates $1.25 billion in total economic output annually.