Providence The Creative Capital


Why deny yourself the opportunity to explore, engage, and truly thrive in a place like no other? That’s the question Providence asks business owners, tourists, artists, and others every day. Schwa partnered with the city of Providence to help our target audiences realize a simple truth: it just makes sense to come here. Get to know the people, history, intellectual might, and our creative capital and you’ll see something else: you really should plan to stay. 


Drawing on destination marketing research from North Star Destination Strategies, Schwa ran with the opportunity to share Providence’s strengths. We were tasked with building a campaign around North Star's theme: Providence the Creative Capital. Executing that vision locally and nationally, we refined the campaign's icon, extended the identity through comprehensive visual design guidelines, and developed key messages and imagery for collateral, advertisements, and physical environments. We extended that work to a lifestyle magazine website featuring an editorial calendar that sources local writers to highlight the city's strengths. Calling on the very subject matter of this engagement, Schwa managed local designers and artists to create campaign materials.

With site traffic from nearly all 50 states and more than two dozen countries, Providence’s tourism economy is testament to the campaign’s continuing success. We’re delighted to share accolades from our industry as well. REBRAND (2010) took notice while Travel + Leisure named Providence one of America's Favorite Cities (2012). 

It remains one of our favorite cities every year.


Project strategy & leadership, idea curation, copywriting & editing, rebrand, identity & campaign asset manager, print collateral, promotional artifacts, vendor coordination, website coordination, marketing website design & development, custom web apps, brand bible, CMS orientation & user manual, photography staging, styling & staging, ongoing reporting – over 100 unique deliverables.

Project leadership from Laura Mullen and Sam Costello, and additional support from Amy Bernhardt, Dave Bellona, and Jim Hanrahan.

“In 10 years of working with the city, I’ve never seen this level of collaboration uniting the various departments—it’s thrilling and unprecedented.”— Lynne McCormack, Director, City of Providence, Department of Art, Culture + Tourism


Providence, RI &
San Francisco, CA
[email protected]
401 427 0270