In 2015, over nine million guests visited Coastal Alabama, accounting for 36% of the total number of visitors to the State. Guests from all over the world travel annually to Mobile and Baldwin counties to experience our history, culture, food, attractions, beaches and hospitality. On November 2nd, 2016, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians unveiled another great reason why visitors should choose Coastal Alabama as their next vacation destination.
It means “big water” in the Muscogee Creek language and it means big things for our region. Beginning in Summer 2017, families will have the opportunity to visit Owa (link to video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3VgZyobvwwc), a 520+ acre destination resort in Foley, Alabama. Currently under construction off of the Baldwin Beach Express, Phase One will feature a Marriott TownePlace Suites, a themed amusement park with 20 rides (including the second longest rollercoaster in the United States) and a variety of shopping and dining experiences. The destination resort will transport visitors into “a mystical southern town” and will include four themed districts: the Warehouse District, the Downtown District, the Amusement Park and the Garden District (which will be completed in a future phase). Owa is also home to the City of Foley’s Sports Tourism Complex which offers 16 state-of-the-art sports fields and an indoor event center.
“We have built something exceptional right here in rural Alabama. People will not just pass through Foley but come to Foley.” – Tim Martin, CEO of Creek Indian Enterprises Development Authority
The unveiling event was held November 2nd, 2016, on the project’s construction site, affectionately called “a field of dreams” by Stephanie Bryan, the Tribal Chair and CEO for the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. Every speaker brought heightened enthusiasm to the podium, emphasizing how much the destination is a true public private partnership among the city, county and state. Lee Sentell, Director of the Alabama Department of Tourism and Travel, called the partners working on the project “One Wonderful Alliance.”
Tim Martin, CEO of Creek Indian Enterprises Development Authority, provided details on the project and stressed the phrase that makes this destination is one of a kind, “Southern Hospitality.” He said that “136 professionals have put in over 31,000 hours studying the concept of southern hospitality” specifically for the creation of this resort. He also announced that future phases of the resort will include a water park, RV park and a second hotel.
With an anticipated opening date of Memorial Day Weekend 2017, this destination will bring over $500 million in investment, new jobs and provide top notch entertainment to both locals and guests alike. For more information, please visit www.VisitOwa.com.
“Southern Hospitality; We know how to do this and we will do it right.” – Tim Martin, CEO of Creek Indian Enterprises Development Authority