Abu Dhabi hotels guests up 14pc
Abu Dhabi, October 29, 2011
The number of guests staying in Abu Dhabi’s hotels rose 14 per cent in the first nine months compared to the same period last, according to figures released by Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA).
To date some 1,514,587 guests have stayed in the emirates’ accommodation sector this year with the figures being boosted by a particularly strong September performance.
Last month saw some 166,805 hotel guests stay in the emirate – a 29 per cent increase on September 2010 with guest nights increasing by 23 per cent, revenue rising by 11 per cent and hotel occupancy climbing 8 per cent on the same comparative month.
“The increase can primarily be attributed to Eid Al Fitr falling in first week of September and Ramadan falling entirely in August as opposed to being spread over August and September last year,” explained Lawrence Franklin, strategy and policy director, ADTA.
“If the September performance can be replicated over the final three months of the year we will reach our stretch 2011 target of 2 million hotel guests,' said Franklin.
'We remain optimistic given the destination’s dynamic events programme, including next month’s staging of the third F1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix followed virtually immediately by Abu Dhabi Art which will be held on Saadiyat Island in the newly erected UAE Pavilion, which drew over 2 million visitors when it debuted at the World Expo in Shanghai last year adding to our attractions offering.'
'This is all backed up by the catalogue of new hotels and resorts due to open which will see the destination cross-marketed throughout the international chains of major hospitality brands entering the market including Rocco Forte, Westin, St. Regis, Park Hyatt and Jumeirah,' he added.
According to Franklin, the rising number of hotel guests this year has led to a 25 per cent year-on-year increase in guest nights to almost 4.5 million.
This is a 10 per cent increase in length of stay at 2.97 days and a 9 per cent increase in occupancy rates to 67 per cent, he added.
Total hotel revenue has gone up 6 per cent to just over Dh3 billion ($838 million) which includes room revenue of Dh1.6 billion ($439 million), which is up 4 per cent, and F&B income of Dh1.1 billion ($307 million).
Year on year the number of rooms available in the emirate have risen 11 per cent amid a slight drop in room rates, said the ADTA official.
The average room rates dropped 14 per cent to Dh470 ($129) and rev par fell 6 per cent to Dh316 ($87).
Throughout the year, guest growth was recorded across all key markets with the strongest coming from the GCC, which is up 29 per cent; Asia, which has risen 24 per cent and other Arab nations and Europe both accounting for 19 per cent increases.
“Key countries which contributed to the growth rate were Saudi Arabia, which increased by 59 per cent and Kuwait which went up by 36 per cent” explained Franklin.
“Europe’s high growth rate was primarily influenced by France, which rose 24 per cent as well as both the UK and Germany, which each increased by 18 per cent.”
The UK remains Abu Dhabi’s top international market with some 98,461 British nationals staying in the emirate’s hotels this year, followed by India, which recorded a 23 per cent rise in hotel guests to 74,973 and the US, which achieved a minimal 2 per cent rise to 58,287 guests.-TradeArabia News Service