Georgia Warms Up A Cool Fall Night

with Martha Chapman

Joe Marinelli and Erica Backus of Visit Savannah

Lori Lynah of Savanna/Hilton International Airport and Simona Cercel of AC

A little toe-tapping music imported direct from Georgia

Toe-tapping bluegrass tunes. Peach cocktails. Southern fried chicken. What a wonderful way to showcase southern hospitality – especially as Toronto’s first flakes of winter were gently falling.

To prove just how hospitable southerners can be, an impressive team of nine tourism execs from Georgia  visited Toronto this week to tout its many charms. And to remind us all of Air Canada’s direct flights YYZ-SAV from March to October, as well as five daily flights to ATL, all making Georgia a perfect weekend getaway.

SAV was well represented with a number of tourism execs including Joe Marinelli, President of Visit Savannah.  “We have 252 days of sunshine every year,” he said proudly.  Winter temps average in the teens Celsius, making for pleasant but not sweltering days.

Culture and architecture are two of the big drawing cards to this small city, famed for its very walkable historic district, featuring pretty park-like squares every few blocks. “We are a town on a human scale and while we respect our history we are a living city.” Erica Backus of Visit Savannah told me.  “You don’t need a car to visit Savannah – just enjoy walking and chatting to the locals!” 

Another big draw for visitors is the annual Savannah Music Festival, a 17-day audio smorgasbord of blues, jazz, chamber, symphony and world music, taking place next year from March 28 to April 13.

Add in the countless and legendary golf courses of nearby Hilton Head, South Carolina; easy drive times to picturesque Charleston, South Carolina and St. Augustine, Florida, and you can see why Savannah is perfectly positioned for a short break or longer fly-drive vacation.

And if someone as well travelled as AC’s Steve Goodfellow, Director of Sales/Eastern Canada, can say “Such great hospitality in Savannah – I’ve got to get back there!” you know there’s a warm welcome waiting for your clients too.

Martha Chapman

Martha Chapman Columnist

An OJ columnist since 2006, Martha is responsible for the Biting Questions features as well as special seasonal series. A travel industry lifer known to all in the biz, she frequently covers industry events for Open Jaw.




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