Hoteliers have been waiting for Chinese outbound tourists for some time, but borders have only really begun unlocking now. Plus, other hotel news from across the globe.
Daily Lodging Report
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Here are some excerpts from Daily Lodging Report from the past week. If you’re not a subscriber, you should be. Get news on hotel deals, development, stocks, and career moves. Sign up here, now.
Sunday, February 19
The 88-room Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott in North Conway, New Hampshire, situated at the base of Cranmore Mountain Resort, is now open. The property will operate as a Marriott franchise, managed by Lafrance Hospitality. Hotel amenities include meeting space, an on-site lobby bar, outdoor patio with multiple firepits and a hot tub, an indoor pool, fitness center, and storage lockers for ski and hiking equipment.
IHG Hotels & Resorts announced the completion of the first phase of a multi-stage renovation at its Holiday Inn Washington-Central/White House property. The initial project included a reimagining of the hotel lobby along with the addition of a Johnny Rockets and Hurricane Wings restaurant, with ongoing renovations of guest room bathrooms scheduled to conclude in Q3 2023. Located in the heart of the nation’s capital, the hotel is owned by RI Associates and managed by Coakley & Williams Hotel Management.
Skift Note: It’s good to see supply chain disruptions come to an end in much of the U.S. hotel development market. Now the holdups are mainly labor and regulatory.
Monday, February 20
Skift Note: There was no report on the U.S. holiday of President’s Day.
Tuesday, February 21
Marriott International is planning 14 new luxury properties opening in the Asia Pacific region this year. Marriott currently has 156 properties in 27 countries and territories in the region, The Australian reported. Some of the openings include the Ritz-Carlton in Melbourne this March and the W Sydney in October. The Ritz-Carlton will take the mantle of Australia’s loftiest hotel with panoramic views and a sky lobby on level 80, with 257 luxury hotel rooms and suites below. The W Sydney will have 585 guestrooms, suites, and studios with harbor views.
Singapore has urged Chinese authorities to restore flight capacity between the two nations to pre-Covid levels as to boost business and tourism ties, The Straits Times reported.
South Korea will increase the number of flights into the country from China to 80 from 62 per week by the end of this month, South Korea’s Prime Minster said, according to a Reuters report.
European Union countries have agreed to phase out pre-departure Covid testing for travelers from China by the end of the month.
Macau visitor arrivals in January doubled year on year, reaching nearly 1.4 million. Jose Wong, an associate professor at the Macau University of Science and Technology’s Faculty of Hospitality and Tourism Management, poured cold water on the situation. He forecasted that Macau would only see half of the yearly pre-pandemic visitors this year.
Worldwide, 38 hotel deals were announced in the sector in January 2023. That was a decline of 42.4% in terms of deals volume compared to the previous month. An analysis by GlobalData of a financial deals database revealed that key markets such as the US, the UK, China, Australia, and Japan experienced a decline in deals volume in January 2023,
Skift Note: Many hoteliers can’t wait for the occupancy boost they hope China’s outbound travelers will bring. Plus: Macau is on the comeback. It appears to be diversifying away from being a casino destination with the help of luxury properties and other attractions.
Wednesday, February 22
The earnings parade continues, with REITs dominating the past 24 hours. PebbleBrook Hotel Trust reported 4Q results that matched their pre-announcement but gave 1Q guidance that was softer than expected. PEB has been changing things back and forth, keeping analysts on their toes. Their pre-announcement in late December roiled the REIT sector, but then an update in January gave a slightly better look. Now the 1Q guidance is well below expectations. Analysts did focus on the $83 million worth of common shares PEB has repurchased since November as a positive surprise.
Apple Hospitality reported results in line with estimates but gave 2023 full-year guidance which was modestly below expectations. Analysts were actually taking a positive view since they are one of the very few to give full-year guidance and were taking this to mean margin pressures may not be as bad as feared. That being said, it was not lost on them that APLE expects expense growth of 5.6%-7.6% while RevPAR growth is expected only to be 3% to 7%.
Standard International’s deal to acquire another Downtown New York City hotel has set a post-pandemic record, according to The Real Deal. The boutique hotel chain purchased the 97-key Sixty Soho Hotel at 60 Thompson Street for $106.9 million from the Pomeranc family’s Sixty Collective.
Twenty-Four Seven Hotels promoted Amanda Hawkins-Vogel to the company’s newly created role of chief operating officer. Hawkins-Vogel was previously senior vice president of operations at Crescent Hotels & Resorts and vice president of operations at Sage Hospitality.
Skift Note: Pricing power seems to be sticky, but so do inflationary costs.
Thursday, February 23
Marriott International said India was the strongest market to recover within Asia Pacific except for Greater China, last year, The Times of India reported. RevPAR recovery for the country was at 120% of 2019 levels in the fourth quarter. Marriott said they have seen a pretty strong recovery across Asia Pacific coming out of the second quarter of last year. Most Asian markets began opening up in phases last summer. Japan was the last of the markets (besides China) to open fully in October. Marriott’s RevPAR recovery compared to 2019 in the fourth quarter with all markets open was 106% of 2019. Marriott said the booking activity and pace of reservations in the current quarter in India are looking even stronger than where they were in the fourth quarter. Marriott has over 27,000 rooms in India, with around 137 operating hotels and another 69 hotels currently under construction. Last year they opened around 11 hotels there. This year with 13 hotels expected to open in South Asia, India makes up 11.
Marriott Vacations missed expectations with their 4Q report, primarily due to their exchange and rental businesses as their core VOI business outperformed. The problem is 2023 guidance was weaker so that was probably the deciding factor on whether the stock was going to have a tough day or not.
Chatham Lodging Trust reported an in-line 4Q for EBITDA. They did not give 2023 guidance.
Accor reported good results and forecasted higher RevPAR for 2023, very optimistic due to the return of the Chinese traveler. Accor said 2022 RevPAR exceeded 2019 (pre-pandemic) levels by 2%.
Skift Note: A lot of the media talk focuses on China, but India is a major growth story, too.
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