According to the latest report published by Ernst & Young, Beirut’s hotel occupancy rate fell yearly by 1.8 percentage points (p.p) to 63.6% by September 2018, compared to the same period last year. The average room rate (ARR) of Beirut’s 4 and 5 star hotels rose by a marginal 0.6% year-on-year (y-o-y) to $187. However the room’s yield (RevPAR) witnessed a yearly decrease by 2.1% to $119 by September 2018. The decrease in Lebanon’s Hotel occupancy rate since the beginning of the year continues to be affected by the yearly 5.45% decline in the number of Arab tourists in Q3 2018, knowing that Arabs are Lebanon’s largest spenders and are therefore stay in 4- and 5- stars hotels.
The hospitality market in Cairo, kept on witnessing one of the best performances in the first 9 months of the year 2018 as occupancy rose by 6 percentage points (p.p) compared to the same period last year, coupled with annual increases in ARR and RevPAR of 7.1% and 17% to $103 and $73, respectively. The growth in Cairo’s hospitality market can be attributed to the increasing stability on the political front government efforts to boost tourism through global touristic campaigns and improved security measures which have led to increased flight arrivals.
Over the same period, Muscat and Doha recorded downturns across all Key Performance indicators (KPIs), whereby hotels’ occupancy rate decreased by 14.7 p.p. and 3.3 p.p.to 54% and 57.6%, respectively.
In Muscat, the ARR and RevPar declined by 12.1% and 30.9% to $138 and $75, respectively. In fact, the decrease in Muscat’s Hotels performance can be linked to the Cyclone Mekunu, an extremely severe tropical storm, hitting the Sultanate during May 2018.
Meanwhile in Doha, the downtick in the hotel’s occupancy rate can be justified by the ongoing regional diplomatic crisis. In fact, the issue is resulting in a significant drop in tourist arrivals from the GCC countries, which used to account for almost 50% of the visitors. As such, average room rate and rooms yield declined by 15.6% and 20.1%, to $126 and $73 by September 2018, respectively. Worth mentioning that in order to improve the tourism sector, Qatar’s Tourism Authority is working on international tourism agreements with countries like Germany and has enhanced visa on arrival provisions.
In the month of September alone, Hotel occupancy in Beirut declined by a yearly 2.1 percentage points (p.p) to 72.3%. In fact, the ARR and RevPar declined from $200 and $149 to $184, and $133, respectively.
Monthly Occupancy Rates in Beirut’s 4- and 5- star Hotels
Source: EY Middle East Hotel Benchmark Survey