Amelia Island tourism rides successful year into holiday season
Image via the city of Fernandina Beach.

fernandina beach marina cofb
The bed tax brought in around $11.39M.

The numbers are looking good for Nassau County’s tourism economy. 

There were more than 758,000 visitors in Fiscal Year 2022, a 14.4% increase year-over-year. That resulted in more than $909,000 of economic impact, which was a 27.2% increase year-over-year.

“An important thing about those statistics is that even though occupancy grew, economic impact had a percentage rate of growth more than double, just for visitation,” said Gil Langley, President and CEO of the Amelia Island Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), at a meeting this week of the Nassau County Board of County Commissioners.

“So, we’re making higher yield with a set number of folks that are coming into the community.”

Numbers were up for traditional lodging as well. Occupancy came in at 63.3%, which is up 14.5% year-over-year. The average daily rate was nearly $300, which is 10.7% more year-over-year, and revenue per available room came in at nearly $190, which is 26.7% more than the previous year.

“Where we’re seeing a lot of growth is from property management, people visiting friends and relatives, and people coming into the community for day trips,” Langley said. 

The bed tax brought in around $11.39 million, of which $5.4 million came from property management and $4.9 million came from hotels. All other bed tax types combined — single family, condo, bed and breakfast, and rooms — generated around $1.06 million.

The numbers are slightly misleading, because a lot of the property management revenue comes from properties managed by Omni at its massive south island development.

The CVB holds voting power on the Gator Bowl team selection committee, and they’re looking forward to the contest between the South Carolina Gamecocks and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at TIAA Bank Stadium in Jacksonville.

“The Gator Bowl has already sold over 70,000 tickets to this ballgame, which is capacity of the facility,” Langley said. “And all of the hotels we’ve talked to are already sold out. The big crowd starts on the 28th of December, the ballgame itself is on the 30th, and of course New Year’s Eve is on the 31st.

“So, we’re seeing at least a four-day input, which would be a great way to send in the new year.”

Wes Wolfe

Wes Wolfe is a reporter who's worked for newspapers across the South, winning press association awards for his work in Georgia and the Carolinas. He lives in Jacksonville and previously covered state politics, environmental issues and courts for the News-Leader in Fernandina Beach. You can reach Wes at [email protected] and @WesWolfeFP. Facebook:


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