December’s Festive Season Raises Beirut’s Hotel Occupancy Rates by 6% y-o-y

According to Ernst and Young’s Hotel Benchmark Survey, Beirut’s hotel occupancy rate in December 2016 increased by 6 percentage points (p.p) to stand at 64%, compared to 58% in the same period last year. This increase is mainly attributed to visitors and families spending Christmas and/or New Year holidays in their home country, especially as confidence was boosted with the formation of a Lebanese Cabinet on Dec.19th.

On a year-to-date basis, Beirut’s hotel occupancy rate recorded a marginal increase of1% in 2016 to stand at 59%, compared to the same period last year. Even though the impact was minimal on hotel occupancy, hotel room rates decreased over the period as a part of hotels’ marketing strategies. Hence, the average room rate and the revenue per room fell by 15% and 13.5% y-o-y to reach $138 and $82, respectively.

The region’s touristic hotspot was Cairo city, whose hotel occupancy rates edged up from 49% in 2015 to 63% by December 2016, mainly thanks to the maintained political stability in the country. The strong performance of Cairo’s hotels was coupled with annual upticks of 26.3% and 62.7% in the average room rate and revenue per room, which settled at $142 and $90 respectively.

The KSA’s hospitality market was the biggest loser of 2016. Occupancy rates of 4 and 5-star hotels dropped in each of Jeddah, Madina, Makkah, and Riyadh, with Madina’s hotel occupancy rate decreasing the most by 13 p.p to rest at 60%. In terms of room rates, results in the different KSA regions were mixed. Average room rates in Madina rose while Riyadh’s fell, knowing Madina’s hospitality revenues mostly rely on tourists coming in for pilgrimage.  

Monthly Hotel Occupancy Rates in Beirut (in %)

December’s Festive Season Raises Beirut’s Hotel Occupancy Rates by 6% y-o-y

Source: E&Y Middle East Hotel Benchmark Survey

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