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Los Angeles welcomed a record 44.2 million visitors in 2014, a 5 percent increase over 2013, the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board announced this week.

Although the majority of visitors, 37.7 million, come from the United States, international visitation reached a record at 6.5 million tourists.

International tourists are especially important to Los Angeles as they stay longer and spend more money, as evidenced by them accounting for 33 percent of all spend.

China is a particularly important market for Los Angeles.

Discover LA’s CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. told Skift earlier this year how the city has grown visitation through in-country offices, social media engagement, and visitor research.

“China is the hot subject on everybody’s mind, but it’s been on our minds in Los Angeles for quite a long time,” Wooden said.

The city also recorded record highs for hotel occupancy and room nights sold in 2014. Hotel occupancy reached 79 percent, up 2 percents from 2013.

Photo Credit: Tourist and locals ride bikes along Venice Beach. Discover Los Angeles