Visalia Becomes A More Inclusive Destination For Travels With Autism

Visalia Marriott at the Convention Center Designated a Certified Autism Center™ and Joins Community Initiative

Visalia, CA (Feb. 1, 2022)
Visit Visalia is pleased to announce that the Visalia Marriott at the Convention Center has been designated a Certified Autism Center™ (CAC)by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards. The hotel property is located in pedestrian-friendly downtown Visalia, the restaurant andentertainment core of the city, and is adjacent to the 114,000 square-footconvention center. Visalia now boasts three hotel properties that have completed the autism program, providing multiple trained and certified options for visitors looking for entertainment, recreation, and hotel choices in the area.“Working with IBCCES, a global leader in online training and certification programs, has given our team the tools and knowledge to provide better service and experiences to all our visitors,” says Carrie Groover, General Manager. “We are excited to be a part of the Visalia movement to become a more inclusive destination for autistic individuals and theirfamilies.”Visalia Marriott guests may request special accommodations during their stay when travelling with a person with autism that may include:

·        Assistance with or expedited check in upon request

·        Separate and quiet dining area, when available

·        Customizable children’s menu to meet individual food preferences

·        Sensory backpacks available for check out during stay

·        Guest rooms with low-light LED and neutral color palette

·        Toiletries removed from room upon request 

·        Security door to pool accessible only with guest room key card The Visalia Marriott joins other local tourism businesses that are working together on an initiative led by Visit Visalia to achieve the “Certified Autism Destination” designation for the city. Local attractions, museums and sports venues are also supporting this initiative including Valley Oaks Golf Course, the first course in California to become a CAC. Along with accommodations for players with sensoryneeds, the course has plans to host clinics specially designed for those with autism. IBCCES works with organizations all over the US and the world to make travel and recreation experiences more positive and accessible. They created to serve as a free resource for families looking for trained and certified travel and recreation options. Each organization listed on the site has met the Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) requirements.

“We’re thrilled for Visalia Marriott at the Convention Center, and proud that they have joined in this community initiative that will make a hugedifference for so many travelers,” said Myron Pincomb, IBCCES Board Chairman.Visit Visalia’s Hidden DisabilitiesSunflower Program helps travelers with special needs obtain additional support they may require while traveling here.  Developed and launched in the United Kingdom, the program is now a recognized icon that travelers with accessibility needs can utilize to discreetly be identified as having a disability. Visit Visalia offers the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower lanyards and bracelets complimentary to those that request them when traveling to our city. 

Visit Visalia has prioritized accessibility and inclusion. Travelers with sensory disabilities like autism are encouraged to use the tools on our website to plan a trip to our city and the nearby Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks.  A complete list of CACs, Visit Visalia Hidden Disabilities Sunflower program participants, links to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks accessibility video series and visitors guide, and much more are available at: is known for having the famous Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks in its backyard, but natural charm, welcoming locals and abundance of experiences are why this Central California city is much more than a gateway to the great outdoors. Along with great outdoor experiences, Visalia’s local food scene, from thriving food truck culture to fine dining, offers foodie lovers even more to explore. We look forward to greeting all travelers.

For more information or to book your stay, go to



Publisher of Sierra Rec Magazine. An avid hiker and explorer of mountain lifestyle and adventure. I love to discover new trails, hike along rivers and hang a hammock along the shores of a mountain lake. I often great people on the trail and have found some of my favorite places from the advice of people I meet in the Wilderness. I love the sierra and just like sharing what I know.

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