Nast Traveller magazine.
Coming from the UK's most respected magazine publisher, within a publication that prides itself on its independence, the award is proof of the effectiveness of close working relationships Leeds City Council has established with the tourism industry
Elizabeth Minkin, Leeds City Council's lead member for development and sustainability, said: 'Leeds City Council, hotels, nightclubs, bars and restaurants, attractions, and retailers have all worked in partnership to make the visitor experience to Leeds a vibrant, cosmopolitan and high quality one, which is not only bringing back repeat customer but also developing new markets. Winning this prestigious award for the first time is another important step towards establishing Leeds as an internationally competitive, and a 'must see' European destination.
'It is a magnificent achievement for the whole city, Leeds City Council and
its partners - it is a particular achievement for the tourism service
Lesley Johnson, Leeds City Council's tourism manager, said: 'Working with
different agencies we have developed a range of popular and award winning
weekend breaks, and contributed to the image of the city as a vibrant and
This was reflected in the survey with 30,000 Traveller Magazine readers,
where Leeds scored very high ratings for entertainment and nightlife, food,
shopping and value for money.
Tourism is big business in Leeds, and brought nearly £735m into the local
economy in 2000, attracting 1.4m trips involving an overnight stay and
18.4m day trips. This in turn supported nearly 20,000 full time equivalent
* Dubbed the 'Knightsbridge of the North' in the Lonely Planet guide to
Britain; for the 2nd year running, Leeds ranks as one of the best three UK
cities for shopping, according to a survey carried out by Experian;
* This year Harewood House won the regional tourist board's award for best
Tourism Website of the Year and Thackray Medical Museum received an award
for best Small Visitor Attraction of the Year.
Last year Harewood House won the regional tourist board's award for best
large visitor attraction, and came second to the Eden Project in the
national England for Excellence awards.
* Visit the city and you can see international sports including
international cricket at Headingley stadium, Leeds Rhinos super league
rugby, Leeds Tykes premiership rugby union and premier football at Leeds
* The acclaimed Leeds International Pianoforte Competition took place last
weekend attracting a world-wide audience. Finnish pianist Antti Siirala won
* Leeds is the most popular university choice in the country.
* Leeds is the UK's fastest growing city, the largest legal centre and
outside London and one of the largest centres for financial and
* In September 2003 three Leeds hotels were named among the top places to
stay in Britain. The Good Hotel Guide 2004 named its top choices in the
city as Malmaison, at Sovereign Quay, 42 The Calls, and Haley's Hotel in