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Report shows signs of recovery for Dublin hotels

A recent survey by accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers shows signs that the hotel sector in Dublin is beginning a tentative recovery from the disastrous impact of the global economic crisis. In fact, according to the report, entitled the ‘European Cities Hotels Forecast’, hotel rooms in Dublin recorded the second highest growth in revenue per available room (RevPAR) among 19 European cities last year.

RevPAR is worked out by multiplying the average room rate of a hotel by its occupancy rate. In 2012 Dublin hotels recorded RevPAR growth of some 13.9 per on the back of 11.7 per cent growth in 2011. St Petersburg experienced the highest growth in RevPAR last year with 14.1 per cent, whilst Prague showed 13.1 per cent growth and Paris 9 per cent.

Speaking about the results of the PwC survey, Keith McCormack, director of Visit Dublin said: “These figures are a great reflection of Dublin’s reputation as a leading destination providing value for money and clearly illustrate Dublin’s international attractiveness, particularly with the city outperforming leading world-class destinations such as London and Paris.”

PwC point to several factors that have helped the recovery in occupancy rates since 2011. These include the wide range of events at venues such as the Aviva Stadium, the Convention Centre Dublin and the O2 as well as the availability of good value rooms in Dublin city centre and an improvement in consumer confidence.

Nevertheless, revenue for 2012 was still 20 percent below the peak achieved in 2006 and the PcW forecast expects RevPAR growth to slow in 2013 due to the prolonged economic downturn. Ann O’Connell, PwC Ireland Consulting Partner, Hospitality and Leisure Group said: “A return to a steady state of economic growth is not likely in the short term and the European hotel industry has to adapt to this ‘new normal’ as well as to new trends and challenges facing the sector.” Dublin hotel room RevPAR is forecast to grow at a much slower 3.1% this year. “Room rates are unlikely to reach the heady days of 2007 any time soon. Nonetheless, occupancy is now back to pre-recession levels and, from a consumer point of view, Dublin continues to offer some of the best value-for-money hotel rooms in Europe.” O’Connell went on to say.

The average daily room rate for hotels in Dublin is forecast to reach €90 per room this year, whilst the average revenue per available room is expected to be in the region of €68.