by Sarah J.F. Braley | May 24, 2016

A new convention and visitors association has been created to handle the growing hospitality industry in Maryland's National Harbor on the Potomac River in Prince George's County. The charter members of Visit National Harbor include the 308-room MGM National Harbor, scheduled to open by the end of the year; the 2,000-room Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center; and the Tanger Outlets, which feature an impressive array of popular store brands, such as Calvin Klein, J. Crew, Nike and Cole Haan.

Bruce Gudenberg has been named executive director of Visit National Harbor, as well as vice president of marketing. His industry résumé includes positions at Destination DC and Choice Hotels.

"With so many amenities and so much to offer, it only made sense that National Harbor would form its own convention and visitors association," said Gudenberg. "National Harbor certainly fits all of the qualifications of a major tourism destination, and the growing volume of annual visitors backs this up." The area's 350 acres feature seven hotels with more than 3,000 rooms and 470,000 square feet of meeting space; some 30 restaurants; and the Capital Wheel, which offers views from more than 180 feet in the air.

Visit National Harbor plans to work with the Prince George's Conference & Visitors Bureau as well as Maryland Tourism, Destination DC, Visit Alexandria and other regional tourism organizations. "With our unique location, we have the good fortune of having many great convention and visitor bureaus nearby to work with to help grow visitation to the Capital-area region," Gudenberg said.