Creative Industries

The Creative Industries cluster is comprised of some of the strongest economic drivers in all of Palm Beach County: Tourism, recreation, film and television production, and entertainment. The primary businesses driving this cluster are hotels and lodging, attractions, shopping and recreation, sports and activities, theaters and entertainment venues, spas and fitness, arts and culture, restaurants and nightclubs, transportation services, tour and charter operators, destination management companies, as well as film and television production.

Visitors are drawn by the region's character, cachet, and its natural beauty. The multiplier effect of travel and tourism reaches many more businesses outside the cluster's primary entities. Trickle-down economic impact from travel and tourism is both wide and deep.  Ancillary impact of this business cluster is felt in every area of the Palm Beach economy.

Why is this Indicator Important?
Tourism activity is a first-line indicator of the brand strength, image, and the overall health of the Palm Beach County economy. Businesses in this cluster support 53,538 jobs directly and indirectly, which generate $1.51 billion in annual salaries and wages. The overall economic impact of tourism is $2.6 billion annually. Tourism is mostly a green business, rather than a “smoke stack” industry. It is becoming increasingly greener and more earth friendly using renewable resources and protecting valuable environmental assets like our 47 miles of beaches, the Everglades, our delicate and endangered coral reefs, and acres of parklands.

Tourism infrastructure and hospitality related businesses became the driving force behind Palm Beach County's development back in mid-1890s, when Henry Flagler created the original resort destination of South Florida. Tourists and tourism-related businesses continue to be significant contributors to the quality of life in the region.

2007 Employment within the Tourism - Related Cluster
(Source:  2007 Annual QCEW, U.S. Dept. of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics)



Avg.  Employment

Leisure and Hospitality                                         



Arts, Entertainment, and  Recreation                          



Performing arts and spectator sports                          



Performing arts companies                                       



Spectator sports                                                 



Promoters of performing arts and sports



Agents and managers for public figures



Independent artists, writers, and performers  



Museums, historical sites, zoos, and parks            



Amusements, gambling, and recreation                     



Amusement parks and arcades                              



Gambling industries                                              



Other amusement and recreation industries



Accommodation and Food Services






Traveler accommodation                                          



RV parks and recreational camps 


Not Disclosed 

Food services                              



Full-service restaurants                                         



Limited-service eating places                                   



Special food services                                           



Film | Television Entertainment 
Film and entertainment in Florida is a $3.9 billion industry, employing almost 34,000 Floridians in 5,599 businesses statewide. In 2007, Production Update magazine named Florida as one of the top 10 filming locations in the United States. In addition, Palm Beach County was named one of the 10 “Great Locations, Coast to Coast” for filming (Markee, December 2007).

With thriving advertising and marketing agencies, production studios, film and TV production companies, and online service providers, Palm Beach County possesses a strong network of creative resources to support almost any type of business endeavor. Other significant assets include a workforce skilled in the creative arts, a wide range of cultural organizations, and incentive programs for business growth.

Recently, the Business Development Board helped Information Television Network (ITV) in Boca Raton identify appropriate incentive programs for its business needs. ITV, a leading producer of health and wellness programming, sought to expand the delivery of its extensive medical library to all platforms: television, Internet, and on-demand programming.

Palm Beach County offers an all-inclusive invitation to film in a world-class destination that features a film-friendly community, year-round warm weather, diverse locations, and free production space. Take advantage of uncharted hot spots, ambitious crews, and a Film Commission that will go the distance to guarantee your satisfaction.

Palm Beach County’s creative industries are helping drive the region’s economy with a skilled workforce, extensive production facilities, and strong arts-oriented educational institutions and organizations in place. The county is well positioned to support continued investment in the creative industries.

Palm Beach County Production Incentives

Free Production Space
The Palm Beach County Film & Television Commission is proud to announce the opening of South Florida's largest motion picture sound stage, G-Star Studios.

The new 12,000 square foot production space is an impressive 48 feet high with 35 feet to the grid. In addition, the surrounding 93,000 square foot G-Star Movie Complex includes a scene shop, props, production offices, student interns and more. 

Best of all the facility is free!  As a benefit, the Film Commission provides fast and easy permitting for more than 2,500 square miles of diverse locations and uncharted hot spots.  Take advantage of ambitious crews and a Film Commission that will go the distance to guarantee your satisfaction.  Go beyond your set and explore all that Palm Beach County has to offer!

G-Star Studios, a Florida non-profit corporation educating students in motion picture and television production, offers this extraordinary incentive package at no charge to filmmakers. Students from G-Star experience a variety of production-related jobs and may be utilized as interns or actors in productions.

LA Liaison Office
Los Angeles Liaison, Susan Simms, is available to work closely with studio executives to identify projects that are suited to Florida’s beautiful and versatile scenery. To reach Ms. Simms, call 818.508.7772.

$150,000 Film & Television Incentive (FTI) Grant Program
Take advantage of a special grant for production companies considering relocating to Palm Beach County. The grant is designed to attract film, television, and multi-media businesses to Palm Beach County, and to provide support to local expanding businesses that are also part of the entertainment industry. The funds are based on job growth including the creation of 25 jobs or more.

Free One-Stop Permitting & 24|7 Service
Founded in 1989, the Palm Beach County Film & Television Commission pioneered the development of the One-Stop Permitting process with 33 film-friendly municipalities. A government-created network allows the office to cut through reels of red tape and offers industry professionals One-Stop Permitting at NO COST. In addition, the Film & Television Commission is a full-service film office with a dedicated staff available to coordinate scouts, email customized photo packages, facilitate your next production project, and more.

Studios, Soundstages, & Production Companies
Palm Beach County has fully equipped studios and soundstages designed to meet a variety of production needs, from lighting packages to building sets. For hands-on assistance, refer to the 65 full-service production companies located throughout the County with years of experience and high-quality results.

Award-Winning Production Professionals
Palm Beach County has an ambitious and talented crew base of award-winning production professionals, including producers, directors, grips, and lighting technicians. These industry professionals have contributed to countless nationally broadcast television programs, feature and independent films, commercial projects, print work, etc. Many of these professionals have received or worked on productions that have been honored with Telly, FREDDIE, Emmy, Addy, and other nationally and internationally recognized awards.

Another major coup underway is Digital Domain (the company behind the special effects animation for 70% of the top-20 grossing films ever made—including Titanic and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End), which will soon break ground on a studio, as well as a digital animation school, in downtown West Palm Beach.

State of Florida Production Incentives:

$242 Million Reasons Why You’ll Want to be in The Sunshine State

This is a new five year program with $242 million in tax credits available over five years. $53.5 million in transferable tax credits will be authorized for distribution during the 2010-2011 fiscal year. Qualified projects will receive 20% to 30% back for qualified Florida expenditures. The new program application, guidelines, and FAQs are available HERE.

20% - 30% Transferable Tax Credit
Three separate queues based on project type/budget:
1. General Production Queue

  • Eligible productions: films, TV, documentaries, digital media projects, commercials and music videos
  • Minimum spend: $625,000
  • Maximum incentive award: $8,000,000

2. Commercial and Music Video Queue

  • Minimum spend: $100,000 per commercial or music video
  • After a production company produces national or regional commercials, music videos, or both and reaches the threshold of $500,000, it is eligible to apply (can bundle projects)
  • Maximum incentive award: $500,000

3. Independent & Emerging Media Production Queue

  • Eligible: films, TV, documentaries, digital media projects
  • Minimum spend: $100,000
  • Maximum spend: $625,000
  • Maximum incentive award: $125,000

5% Bonus Off-Season Bonus
A production, other than a digital media project or an animated production, which films 75% or more of its principal photography days from June 1 through November 30 may be eligible for additional savings.

5% Bonus for Family-Friendly Films Bonus
Scripted productions that are appropriate in theme, content, and language for a broad family audience may be eligible for additional savings.

Separate Queue for Independent Florida Filmmakers
Local filmmakers with modest budgets have their own queue with a lower threshold of $100,000 in order to earn a 15-17% cash rebate.

Sales tax exemption
Qualified production companies can save on the purchase or lease of certain items used exclusively as an integral part of the production activities in Florida.


  • Sale or lease of motion picture, video, and sound recording equipment.
  • Rent or lease of real property used as an integral part of a production.
  • Labor to produce a motion picture, MOW, TV series, commercial, music video, or sound recording.
  • Artistic or copyrighted material.

For more information on state incentives, please call the Governor’s Office for Film & Entertainment Commission at 877.352.3456, or visit

Helpful Links to Related Palm Beach County Agencies
Click on one of the links below to visit the website.

Palm Beach County Visitors & Convention Bureau (
Palm Beach County Cultural Council (
Palm Beach County Sports Commission (
Palm Beach County Film & Television Commission (
Downtown Development Authority (
Palm Beach County, Florida  (

Where can you get more information?

Business Development Board of Palm Beach County
310 Evernia Street, West Palm Beach, FL 33401

Kelly Smallridge, President and CEO
Gary Hines, Senior Vice President, Administration

Shawn Rowan, Vice President, Business Retention and Expansion