“Good Morning America” ushered in the new year with a Jan. 1 segment touting Asheville as the No. 1 destination in the country to visit in 2015.
“It’s an amazing place. It’s really coming into its own. It’s a glorious natural setting,” said Pauline Frommer, editorial director of the popular Frommer travel guide. She went on to promote the area’s thriving craft beer scene to the national audience.
However, Frommer jumped the gun when discussing New Belgium Brewing’s major new development in the River Arts District, which isn’t scheduled to open until the end of 2015. Local artists who have long worked in the area might also take issue with her use of the word “sketchy” to describe the area before New Belgium’s construction.
“We’re picking [Asheville] this year because the sketchy riverside area has been totally redone thanks to the New Belgium Brewery, which has poured millions of dollars into this area, making new parks, artists collectives, farmers markets, bike paths,” says Frommer. “It’s just a great place to go. It has the most breweries per capita, so always a party.”
At the same time, Frommers published a story calling Asheville the “Austin of the East — accessible, youth-friendly, affordable and the place to go for a sweet lifestyle.”
Tourism in Asheville is already booming. In October, hotel occupancy shattered previous records and several new hotels plan to open downtown in the coming year.
Watch the GMA segment here: