Catalina Island Takes the Global Stage
Press Releases
Friday, June 07, 2019 08:00 AM
In two major announcements and several Island visits, Catalina Island is growing in global awareness.

What happens when all in the course of a week, a small California island in the Pacific Ocean enjoys being announced as the first US destination for ÖTILLÖ Swimrun, an emerging extreme sporting event, then is revealed as the inspiration for naming Apple's new Operating System all while playing host to a delegation of international visitors as part of US Travel's IPW convention? According to Jim Luttjohann, President & CEO of the Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau, "you bask in the glory for a few minutes, in between other duties like meetings and hosting film crews."

 At its Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple revealed a brand-new Mac Operating System. Initially revealed as a screen saver image showing the island's western tip, the presentation by Apple CEO Tim Cook later showcased a sweeping set of changes and an entirely new Operating System named Catalina! A few years ago when Yosemite was the namesake of the Mac Operating System, that destination saw about a 20% jump in website traffic and a similar uptick in hotel bookings.

The ÖTILLÖ Swimrun World Series has chosen Catalina Island as home to its first US Race. According to Michael Lemmel, Race Director for ÖTILLÖ and co-founder of Swimrun, "Catalina offers the perfect venue for athletes from around the world to experience nature. Located just off the coast of Los Angeles, there will be easy access via flights to LAX and SNA combined with a short passenger ferry ride." Lemmel went on to say "The Island's topography makes an ideal location for a Swimrun event." The race is slated for February 28 - March 1, 2020. Learn more at

This year US Travel's IPW Convention was staged in Anaheim drawing tour and travel delegates from around the globe. In partnership with Catalina Express, Catalina Island was visited pre-conference by 20 tour operators from Germany, the UK, Italy, Denmark, Sweden, Austria and Brazil. The visiting delegation was made up of Travalco sales reps and representatives who enjoyed Taste of Catalina Food tours, Lunch at the Lobster Trap, an Undersea Expedition, Skyline Tours and dinner at Steve's Steakhouse among their activities. The Holiday Inn Resort and Hotel Metropole hosted the delegates at their properties. Travalco will now sell Catalina Island as a destination to clients in ten countries for individual and group trips to the island. The Island was represented on the convention floor and at IPW events by Carol Elliot and Kristin McCauley of Catalina Express.  

The Catalina Island Company in partnership with Catalina Express recently hosted representatives from Globus on a two-day island trip. Globus sells Catalina as part of their California series.

A variety of internationally based media and film crews have recently visited the island with outcomes to be revealed soon. Look for the Island in product campaigns by international brands in sporting goods, travel gear and more. In addition travel features are anticipated in both television and print media outlets that reach audiences internationally. The Catalina Island Conservancy, Catalina Express, Catalina Island Company and the Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau have worked closely in facilitating the media and film crew visits in order to showcase the island all around the world.