tourism
Gov. Andrew Cuomo holds his Covid-19 vaccination record as he gives a press conference in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., June 2, 2021. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

With New York State’s infection rate currently the lowest in the nation, state officials are encouraging locals and tourists alike to plan their summer vacation in the Empire State.

The state is launching a series of new advertising campaigns selling both downstate and upstate New York as hot tourist destinations as the ‘vaccine summer’ gets underway. Though the first commercial focuses on New York City, Cuomo did mention Long Island’s beaches and vineyards as destinations for tourists to enjoy.

“We want to broadcast this all across the world,” Cuomo said during a press conference at the Javits Center. “We want people coming to New York, and we want people to know they are welcome.”

The governor encouraged New Yorkers to take advantage of their home state as well this summer, with Covid still raging in other parts of the world.

“You’re planning your summer vacation, forget traveling, forget getting on a plane, going to Europe where you still have Covid infection rates that are much higher,” he said. “Stay in New York — this state has anything you could possibly want to do.”

Cuomo boasted of the attractions that will be coming back at near full capacity, with seating reserved for vaccinated patrons, including Citi Field and Radio City Music Hall. The Javits Center will also return to its role as a convention center when the New York International Auto Show returns on Aug. 29.

While touting the city’s tourist attractions, the governor still took the chance to hit rival Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration over its handling of crime in the city, where gun violence has spiked to historic highs and violence against Asian Americans continues to be a regular occurrence, with another vicious attack caught on camera in Chinatown on Memorial Day.

“New York City has to address the crime problem, it is a city responsibility,” Cuomo said. “We can do everything we’re doing, New Moynihan Train Hall, new Penn Station, tourism ads — people have to feel safe, and crime is a major problem in New York City.”

This story first appeared on amNY.com.

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