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December 2015: a morose end of the year for Middle Eastern hoteliers

On the last month of the year only Algeria's hotel industry was able to drive its indicators up. In neighboring countries the sector suffered from a shortage of Western clientèle who were reticent about traveling in the region due to safety concerns.



Change in the RevPAR by country



In December, hotel performances  in North Africa are very contrasted depending on the destination. Still paralyzed by the lack of Western clientèle following the terrorist attacks, the hotel industry in Tunisia ended the month with further deterioration in its Revenue per available room (RevPAR) by 14.8%. This sharpens the decline in performances observed since the attacks on the Bardo and in Soussa, and participates in the 18.5% drop in the indicator on the whole of 2015.

Hotels in Morocco also felt the consequences of the attacks on tourist arrivals in the region resulting in a 12% in its RevPAR in December. The latter played an essential role in the slump in activity observed in  2015, with a 4.4% drop in the RevPAR.

Less dependent on the presence of foreign clientèle, hotel activity in Algeria maintained a level of business similar to December 2014, with 0.4% improvement in its RevPAR. The country even managed to make its hotel activity indicators progress on the year overall, with a 3.3% increase in its RevPAR.

Also affected by terrorist threats, Egypt closed the month with a 4.8% drop in its RevPAR, particularly due to the poor results of hotels located on the Sinai Peninsula, in Hurghada and Sharm el Sheik. While the national average price increased by 6.3% on the period, the slump in activity is more due to the drop in occupancy (-4.8 points). These results have not prevented 23.8% growth in the RevPAR in 2015 over the very low levels in 2014.

The hotel sector in Turkey is also on a downtrend. The sector posted a drop in the RevPAR by 9.2% in December, partly due to the 5.2% drop in the average daily rate and 2.3 point drop in the occupancy rate. The slump in activity in Istanbul is the primary cause of the nationwide shrinking, as it showed as a drop by 4.4 points in occupancy rate on the month. On the whole of the year, it is the 7% drop in average daily rate that led to the 4.7% drop in the RevPAR, despite 1.6 point improvement in the occupancy rate.

Jordan has also recorded a 6.7% drop in its RevPAR due to the 3.4% drop in average daily rate combined with the 1.4 point drop in occupancy. This trend is even more evident in Lebanon, where the hotel sector experienced a 13.4% drop in its RevPAR, partiularly due to the 6 point drop in occupancy. the country nonetheless ended the year with 5.6% growth in its RevPAR, driven by 5.6% growth in average daily rate, while Jordan's indicator fell by 13% over the last 12 months.

In the Arabian Peninsula, Bahrain is one of the only countries able to post growth in its hotel indicators with a 1.3% increase in its RevPAR. The destination's properties particularly benefited from hosting the Energy Management Conference & Exhibition 2015, from December 6 to 8 in Manama. The positive note of the month of December nonetheless did not reverse he trend for 2015, wile the RevPAR is down 4.3% on the period.

Once again, in December, the RevPAR fell in Qatar (-8.2%), in the United Arab Emirates (-7.6%) and in Oman (-8.2%). The three destinations nonetheless hosted major events for the sector: the QMED 2015 in Doha between December 2 and 4,  SIAL Middle East in Abu Dhabi from December 5 to 7 and, Oman Minerals & Mining in Mascate between December 6 and 8.

Moreover, Saudi Arabia followed the regional trend, but to a more moderate extent. The kingdom's hotel industry posted a 1.5% slump in its RevPAR on the month of December when 2.1% growth in the average daily rate was unable to make up for the 2.2 point drop in occupancy. The RevPAR is nonetheless up by 4.9% across the year, thanks in particular to growth in the average daily rate by 4.2%.

Finally, although Koweït posts 1.9% growth in its average daily rate in December, the RevPAR in the country is down by 6.9% due to the 4.9 point drop in occupancy rate.



Also read:



  • November 2015: hotels in the Middle East take a downturn
  • Tunisia: a grim tally for tourism in 2015

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