NAPLES, Fla. - New Year's Eve could provide a much-needed boost for business in Southwest Florida. Consumers seem to be eager to spend.
The Baleen restaurant at the La Playa Beach Resort is about to see 200 people ready to get the party started, and Anthony Hobbs' crew is in a frenzy to get ready.
"Now we have the band rolling in, we got the balloons and decorations going on. So, it's a Barnum and Bailey Circus going on," Hobbs explains.
One look at the reservation list and you can see they've got a full house for the big night. The reason may have something to do with the price. The six course meal topped off with a glass of bubbly is nearly a quarter off what they would normally charge.
In downtown Naples, if you want a room at the Inn on Fifth you may have a hard time New Year's Eve, they're at a hundred percent occupancy.
None of this comes as much of a surprise to owner Phil McCabe, "There's a lot of pent up demand because of the last three years of this economy. The consumer is definitely back, back again. Not like they were three years ago, but the consumer's back."
He's even taken the liberty to deck out the Sugden Plaza for the first time, ringing in the new year with all his customers.
"I think everybody is wanting to kiss off 2010, I know I am."
RENEE STOLL, REPORTER