The number of international visitors staying one night or more in the Greater Miami area continues to rise. Non-domestic tourism has steadily increased the past four years from 3.4 million in 2010 to 4.2 million this year. The leading international feeder markets include Sao Paulo, Brazil; Caracas, Venezuela; London, United Kingdom; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Bogota, Colombia, reinforcing the major role South Americans play in the region’s tourism heavy economy.

And, while these visitors make up slightly more than half of all tourists who visit Greater Miami and the Beaches, they account for 70 percent of all tourism spending. Last year, international visitor spending amounted to nearly $16 billion of the overall $22.8 billion spent by tourists.

International tourists come to South Florida prepared to spend money and while there, they do just that. Among the beneficiaries are the region’s upscale hotels and resorts. Two prime destinations are Turnberry Associates properties – the iconic Fontainebleau Miami Beach and popular Turnberry Isle Miami, which are favorites of the international set.

Turnberry Associates, run by brother and sister duo, Jackie and Jeffrey Soffer-have ensured that both resorts are exciting, new luxury destinations that retain their legendary status. A vision that should continue paying dividends.

It took approximately 25 years for the first international market to reach the $1 billion spending plateau in Miami, when Brazil first hit that milestone. That was in 2010. Now, just four years late, Brazilian visitors appear on track to double that to $2 billion. International tourism definitely provides a golden lining for South Florida’s economy. Luxury resorts and hotels appear well-positioned to capitalize on that.