A growing divide is emerging in the UK ’ s hotel sector between the performance of leisure-based hotels compared with primarily business-orientated properties , according to the latest Hotel Bulletin published this month by HVS .
Those hotels in cities with a more developed tourism industry performed noticeably better in the final quarter of 2016 as a result of the weaker pound attracting foreign tourists and Brits choosing staycations .
Belfast , for example , saw RevPAR growth of 23 % during the final quarter of 2016 on the back of significant investment in the city as a tourist destination . Liverpool ’ s hotels reported growth of 14 % during the same period , while Edinburgh and Bath both experienced 13 % growth in RevPAR .
By contrast hotels in Newcastle saw an 8 % decline in RevPAR , Aberdeen a 22 % decline on the back of the falling oil market , while Cardiff ’ s RevPAR dropped by 6 %.
Hotels in London experienced a modest 2 % increase in both RevPAR and occupancy , while average room rates remained static . Occupancy in London ’ s hotel sector had shown a decline for the previous seven quarters .
“ As the most popular tourist city London is particularly well placed to attract more visitors and benefit from the weaker pound but growth was offset by the potential of corporate decline ,” commented HVS chairman Russell Kett . “ London may see a further decline in corporate bookings because of depressed GDP growth , particularly if threats made by several large companies to move staff out of the country come to fruition .”
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The steady increase in the UK ’ s hotel supply continues with the addition of 14,600 hotel bedrooms during 2016 – a net increase of 1.7 % when closures are taken into account . Forecasts estimate that 2017 will see supply growth of 3.3 %. London shows the strongest annual growth in hotel bedrooms , while the UK ’ s regions average a net supply gain of 1 %.