Lebanon Businessnews News

Highest hotel room
rates in three years
Average room rates reached $176 in H1 2015
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Hotel average occupancy rates at four and five-star properties reached 56 percent during the first half of 2015, according to ‘Middle East hotel benchmark survey report’ recently published by Ernst & Young. The figure shows a six percent growth compared to the same period last year.

This demand was reflected in room rates, which grew by 4.6 percent to reach $176, the highest since 2012. The revenue per available room (RevPAR) grew by 17 percent to $99. Wadih Kenaan, Secretary of the Syndicate of Hotel Owners, said that the boost is related to increased demand. “These high rates are available in four and five-star properties, mostly in the capital, which highlights the attractiveness of Beirut,” he said.

According to Kanaan, this increase shows market resilience. “Our market is fighting back and tourists are more willing to comeback,” he said. According to Kenaan, Arab tourists who had decreased their visits due to political turmoil and security instability are now more hopeful that the situation will improve and not become worse.

According to Ihab Kanawati, General Manager of Staybridge Suites Beirut, the negative performance during the previous year drove hospitality establishments to lower their benchmarks for this year. “However, bookings were beyond expectations and results achieved were remarkably positive,” he said.

Other indicators also highlighted the positive trend in the hospitality sector during the first half of the year. During the first five months of the year, tourists reached over 500,000, marking an 18 percent growth compared to the same period in 2014. Arabs constituted around 180,000 out of the total, growing from 151,000 last year. Tourism expenditure grew by seven percent, compared to the same period last year, according to a report by Global Blue.
Reported by Rana Freifer
Date Posted: Jul 31, 2015
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