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PLEASE have your $ame-$ex wedding in L.A.

June 16, 2008 |  3:27 pm

Ameex_marriage OK, there's no actual begging in the news release announcing the how-to website launched by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and the city's Convention and Visitors Bureau for same-sex marriages in the city, but it comes mighty close.

"With sunny skies, beautiful beaches and world-class attractions, Los Angeles is the picture perfect place where couples can finally take their vows and enjoy an unforgettable honeymoon,” Mayor Villaraigosa said. “From Hollywood Boulevard and Universal Studios to the Venice Boardwalk and L.A. Live, the wedding bells will be ringing all summer long in the City of Angels.”

By clicking on the new “Gay Travel” link on the discoverlosangeles.com website, couples can find information on a variety of lovely settings for their ceremonies. The site also features a Frequently Asked Questions section that walks prospective visitors through the process they will need to follow in order to walk down the aisle this summer. In addition, the site provides a list of Travel Alternatives Group-approved hotels, deemed gay-friendly establishments, where couples can host receptions, spend their wedding night or enjoy an extended honeymoon.

The same-sex marriage boom could bring as much as $684 million to California in the next three years, the news release states, extrapolating figures provided by The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. Estimates for Los Angeles, when you factor in ceremonies, food and lodging for brides and grooms and families and friends, gifts, honeymoons and related tchotchkes, come to an additional $57 million per year. (Full release after the jump.)

--Veronique de Turenne

Illustration: Susan Tibbles

MAYOR VILLARAIGOSA AND LA INC. LAUNCH NEW WEB RESOURCE TO HELP SAME-SEX COUPLES MARRY IN LOS ANGELES

UCLA study says gay marriages could provide $684 million boost to State economy

LOS ANGELES - Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and LA INC, the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau, today announced a new web marketing campaign designed to make Los Angeles the nation’s top destination for same-sex weddings.

The California State Supreme Court’s recent ruling which legalized gay marriage is expected to spark a tourism boom as nearly 70,000 extra visitors come to California in the historic new era of marriage rights and equality. In recognition of this fact, LA INC has created a one-stop shop at www.discoverlosangeles.com  where visitors can now find the information they need to make wedding plans and travel arrangements.

“With sunny skies, beautiful beaches and world-class attractions, Los Angeles is the picture perfect place where couples can finally take their vows and enjoy an unforgettable honeymoon,” Mayor Villaraigosa said. “From Hollywood Boulevard and Universal Studios to the Venice Boardwalk and L.A. Live, the wedding bells will be ringing all summer long in the City of Angels.”

By clicking on the new “Gay Travel” link on the discoverlosangeles.com website, couples can find information on a variety of lovely settings for their ceremonies. The site also features a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section which walks prospective visitors through the process they will need to follow in order to walk down the aisle this summer. In addition, the site provides a list of Travel Alternatives Group (TAG) approved hotels, deemed gay-friendly establishments, where couples can host receptions, spend their wedding night or enjoy an extended honeymoon.

The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law projects that same-sex marriages could provide a $684 million boost to the State economy over the next three years. Based on the results of the Williams Institute study, LA INC. estimates that the total spent in Los Angeles by same-sex couples, their friends and family over the next three years would come to $171 million, or about $57 million per year. This figure includes spending by both in-state and out-of-state couples.

“Los Angeles is the perfect setting for a destination wedding,” said Mark Liberman, President and CEO of LA INC. “Now that the California Supreme Court has extended marriage rights to same-sex couples, the Bureau’s goal is to make it as easy as possible for gays and lesbians to plan their nuptials using our website. Whether they choose a civil ceremony, exchange vows at a church altar, or host a fabulous reception at one of our top hotels, all the information they need is readily available with the click of a mouse.”

LA INC., The Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau, is a private, nonprofit 501(c)(6) business association contracted by the City of Los Angeles and its mission is to advance the prosperity of LA’s visitor economy and livelihoods that depend on it. For more information, visit www.discoverlosangeles.com.

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