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June 6, 1944 commemoration: Massive tourist landings in Normandy’s hotels

Commemorations for the D-Day landings of the Allies in Normandy on June 6, 1944 have always driven hotel activity in Normandy, but for this 70th anniversary the impact was multiplied exponentially with strong repercussions felt far and wide.

Business for the week from May 30 to June 5, 2014 compared to the same period in 2013 shows growth in room revenues up by 33% throughout the future reorganized region of Normandy (uniting Upper and Lower Normandy). Tourist arrivals in both areas boosted occupancy (+9.6 points for the occupancy rate) and average daily rates (+16.9%).

The departments of the Calvados and the Manche posted the strongest increases in results, on the one hand because this is where the main events were held, and on the other because it is where most accommodations may be found, Caen and Deauville in particular. The increase in prices was particularly evident in the Calvados, while occupancy in the Manche increased. But the impact of D-Day could also be felt in departments further away such as the Orne and Seine-Maritime, along the beach route from Paris. Visitors to the Eure appear to have preferred to get closer to events or to postpone or anticipate their stay.

Aside from the decennial anniversary, D-Day destinations always generate additional local activity that mostly impacts occupancy rates of coastal hotels in the Calvados and the Manche. The month of May and June are already strong periods of activity for properties in this holiday destination.

But in 2014, for its 70th anniversary, the breadth of the event gives it a particular character, due to the importance of commemorative events organized, and also the arrival in Normandy of many international delegations, Heads of State, high-profile international dignitaries, as well as the media.

The increase in Revenue Per Available Room in the departments of the Calvados and the Manche began more than a week before the ceremonies, with an increase in activity from May 29, 2014:

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