Colorado Tourism Survey Shows Legal Pot’s Influence

COLORADO: Marijuana businesses have long proclaimed that cannabis is drawing visitors to Colorado. Now they have proof.

A study commissioned by the Colorado Tourism Office and presented to the office’s board of directors on Wednesday shows legal weed as a growing motivator for trips to Colorado — conflicting with the mantra of tourism officials statewide that savvy marketing alone is responsible for record visitation and spending in the last two years.

While the state’s “Come to Life” ad campaign is certainly successful, surveys in October and November of potential summertime visitors who were exposed to the state’s tourism ads revealed that the marijuana laws influenced vacation decisions nearly 49 percent of the time.

“I think it is rearing its head as a significant travel and tourism amenity for visitors coming to Colorado,” said Al White, who retired as boss of the Colorado Tourism Office in August and now serves on the board of a cannabis tourism company.

Colorado Raises $150 Million From Marijuana. Will More States Legalize?

COLORADO: Colorado has brought in more than $150 million in marijuana tax revenue, according to official state data.

That doesn’t make it a budgetary panacea, warn lawmakers.

“The big lesson we tell other states is you probably shouldn’t legalize marijuana if you want to make money – that’s not why you do it,” said J. Skyler McKinley, deputy director of the governor’s Office of Marijuana Coordination, to the Huffington Post. “You do it because you think that a regulated marketplace might be safer than an unregulated marketplace, or you believe that the war on drugs didn’t work.”

Impact Of Marijuana On Travel Hard To Assess In Colorado

COLORADO:  A year after marijuana sales became legal in Colorado, the impact on tourism is difficult to assess.

At least 18 companies offer bus tours of marijuana facilities, and a Denver bed and breakfast markets itself as a “bud and breakfast,” the Denver Post reported Sunday.

But state-funded agencies aren’t promoting marijuana tourism, and no statistics are available on its impact.

Colorado Tourism Office Director Al White said promoting pot-oriented travel could put the state in danger of violating laws. Marijuana is still illegal under federal statutes.

AirTHC Aims to Connect Weed-Friendly Homeowners and Travelers

COLORADO: Presumably, folks visiting Colorado for a bit of “weed tourism” will want somewhere to enjoy the fruits of their travels. But until more cannabis cafes proliferate, what’s a vacationing stoner to do? It can be hard to hide the smell of marijuana in a hotel, and most Airbnb hosts make no mention of their pot policies. Plus Colorado law prohibits smoking weed in any public places. Enter airTHC.

Building on Airbnb’s short-term rental model, airTHC connects travelers with marijuana-friendly vacation rentals, “ensuring that you’ll have a private space of your own to smoke—legally—while you stay in Colorado.”

As with Airbnb, both property owners and potential renters fill out a profile. “As you stay in places you acquire a reputation,” Jordan Conner, airTHC’s co-founder, told CBS Denver. “You will also be able to contact the person before they come and stay in your place.”

So far, more than 30 property owners have signed up with airTHC. The owners plan to launch to renters “in the very near future,” co-founder Greg Drinkwater says.

High Class Dining: Colorado Restaurant Introduces Weed-And-Food Pairing Menu

COLORADO:  When you go to a gourmet restaurant, you might find yourself asking the sommelier to recommend a fine wine to complement your meal.

But now, as more states begin to legalize recreational marijuana use, diners will soon be asking another question: What fine weed will enhance my dining experience? [Read more…]

Arapahoe Basin Ski Area Visitors Exhibit Confusion About Colorado’s Marijuana Laws

COLORADO: The ski season is just two weeks old and already there appears to be some confusion about Colorado’s new laws governing personal marijuana use and possession.

According to a recent CBS Denver report, several visitors to Arapahoe Basin Ski Area have had their ski passes revoked due to public use of marijuana. A-Basin officials declined to comment about how many passes it has pulled so far this season and how ski area officials were made aware of the violations. [Read more…]