Several hospitality professionals and organizations in the Houston region, including one Houston First Corporation team member, are recipients of the Texas Travel Alliance’s 2023 Best of Texas awards.

Texas Travel Alliance (TTA) sponsors an annual study tour to different regions for the state’s travel counselors. Counselors travel on a five-day whirlwind bus tour to visit various Texas cities, including their attractions, museums, parks, restaurants and other experiences. The goal is to better understand what Texas has to offer its visitors and share that knowledge with the millions who travel to the state each year. As part of the study tour, TTA counselors award those hospitality professionals and organizations that go above and beyond with the Best of Texas awards. 

Laura Haces, Senior Manager of Product Development in the Tourism department of Houston First, was named “best step-on guide” in this year’s awards. Laura shared that recognition in a tie with another step-on guide, Elizabeth Eddins with Visit The Woodlands.

Other winners in the Houston region include:

“We’re proud to have Laura represent Houston First and to have her knowledge and expertise recognized by TTA," said Jorge Franz, Senior Vice President of Tourism & Industry Relations at Houston First. 

“Travel and tourism are so important to our state and to local communities and we are thrilled to highlight individuals and businesses who represent the best of the best and help our visitors have great experiences as they explore”, said Erika Boyd, President & CEO of Texas Travel Alliance.

Travel and Tourism employs over 1.1 million Texans in more than 60,000 businesses working to make Travel and Tourism the third largest export industry in Texas. Travelers to Texas helped to create over $7.6 billion in state and local tax revenues, offsetting the individual tax burdens of Texans by more than $555 per household.