Dublin tops in European hotel sector for 2013

Dublin is expected to be the star performer in the European hotels sector this year, despite no new properties coming on stream.

The latest European city hotel survey from professional services giant PwC has ranked Dublin as top performer for 2013, in terms of revenue per available room — a leading performance indicator used in the hotel industry — with 11.2% growth.

Although, such revenue growth (among Dublin hotels) is expected to slow to just over 5% this year and just under 4% in 2015; the capital would still be the top performer in Europe.

This is despite the only movement in the market here being extensions and redevelopments, rather than actual entirely new premises being built.

“Growth is expected to continue for 2015, as occupancy and room rates continue to rise; albeit at more modest levels than the past few years.

“It is interesting to note that occupancy has now passed pre-recession levels and it is clear, from a consumer point of view, Dublin continues to offer some of the best value hotel rooms in Europe,” said Jennifer Gillen, senior manager at PwC Ireland’s hotel and leisure unit. However, Michael Ring — minister of state at the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport — warned that while the survey shows Dublin to have remained a very attractive location for hotels, value remains key and cannot be ignored by owners.

“Dublin has held on to its reputation as a leading destination. However, as we emerge from a very tough period for tourism, value for money is still critical. Hotels need to ensure that customers get a good bang for their buck, whether that’s at premium or at economy level,” he added.

In terms of actual occupancy levels, Dublin isn’t leading the way, but was ranked as high as fourth in Europe, with a near 80% increase measured last year.

Growth in occupancy rates among the capital’s hotels is expected to level out this year and next, but Dublin is expected to be not too far behind growth levels due in the likes of London, Paris and Edinburgh over the coming 12 months. Room rates are also likely to reach an average of €96 by next year, still below the 2007 peak level of €109.

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