Landing International Meetings: How Hawai'i Secured APEC
After Hawai'i hosted the APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) Leaders' Summit in November 2011, the real work began—taking the attention of thousands of government and business leaders and translating it into millions—even billions—of dollars in future meeting and event spend. After all, the greatest motivation for hosting its first truly multinational government event was for Hawai’i to showcase its business-meeting expertise.
So, the real question for destinations, especially those without much international experience, is how Hawai’i—and the city of Honolulu—landed one of Asia-Pacific’s most prestigious and celebrity events, despite a dearth of experience in transnational meetings and a predictable but inaccurate reputation for only fun-in-the-sun. Hawai’i landed APEC Leaders’ Week due to circumstance, pride, a little luck and a whole lot of support from its government and military leaders, community activists, corporate owners, university academics, nonprofit executives and volunteers. Here is their story.
Letters of Support. Supporters needed to get backing from government entities and the business community. In writing.
Video Testimonials. U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, then-APEC Ambassador Lauren Moriarty, Gov. Linda Lingle and Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann recorded testimonial videos, which were sent together with a destination feature clip.
U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye
Gov. Linda Lingle
APEC Ambassador Lauren Moriarty
Mayor Mufi Hannemann