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Annapolis Tours by Watermark wins Tourism Partnership award from State

| November 16, 2016, 04:29 PM


Watermark Award Architrex

Annapolis Tours by Watermark and Historic Annapolis receive the Tourism Partnership award from Maryland Office of Tourism. Pictured (l to r): Managing Director of the Division of Tourism, Film and the Arts, Liz Fitzsimmons; Vice President of Education and Interpretation Historic Annapolis Lisa Robbins; Director of Land Operations Watermark Heather Skipper; Maryland Secretary of Commerce R. Michael Gill.

Annapolis Tours by Watermark was awarded the Tourism Partnership award during the 36th Annual Maryland Tourism & Travel Summit at the Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards on November 3rd. The award was presented in recognition of Watermark’s partnership with Historic Annapolis for the partners’ development of Architrex, a new architecture walking tour of historic Annapolis. The Maryland Office of Tourism Development and Maryland Tourism Development Board award recipients who help fulfill their mission of promoting Maryland’s attractions, ensuring a positive trip experience and positioning Maryland as a competitive destination worldwide. The Tourism Partnership award is given based on excellence and significant contribution in tourism partnership with a regional or statewide impact.

Heather Skipper, Director of Land Operations at Watermark says, “It’s an honor to be recognized by our peers in Maryland tourism. Historic Annapolis has long been a wonderful partner of ours in our mission to support historic education, tourism and preservation. We are incredibly proud of Architrex and we’ve received a lot of positive feedback and great reviews from our guests. We look forward to sharing the stories of Annapolis’ architecture with Marylanders and visitors to our area for many years to come.”

Criteria considered for the Tourism Partnership award were key initiatives as they relate to tourism, product development, marketing activities, level of innovation and creative thinking and results including measured proof of impact. Criteria also included the partnership’s impact on improving the region’s perception and product offering.

How did this partnership form? In early 2016, Annapolis Tours by Watermark and Historic Annapolis came together to discuss a need: a tour that highlights Annapolis’ unsurpassed collection of architecture. For the best execution, it needed to be led by an architect. When Craig Martin, a local architect, expressed desire to be part of such a tour, development kicked off. Each partner brought a key to success: Watermark’s experience developing walking tours, training guides, marketing machine, and experience in tour logistics; the knowledge and access of Historic Annapolis’ historians; and Craig Martin’s skills, knowledge and passion as a professional architect.

Leslie Xavier, another local historian and architect, and Martin focused on illustrating 300 years of architecture, identifying the historical connections to different architectural styles and periods. Watermark focused on the flow of the tour and trained the architects to become guides. Historic Annapolis’ historians vetted the tour’s historical information.

Architrex made its debut for Four Rivers Heritage Area’s Maryland Day in Mach 2016 then joined Watermark’s public tour schedule in June 2016 running twice monthly through October. Regularly scheduled Architrex tours will resume in May 2017. It is currently available for private bookings. Learn more at

Presented by the Maryland Tourism Coalition, the November 2-4 Maryland Tourism & Travel Summit is Maryland’s signature tourism and hospitality event of the year.

Category: Businesses, LIFE IN THE AREA, Local News, NEWS

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