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The summer holidays on France's shorelines, off to a good start

Although results differ from one coast to another, all confirm a single positive trend: the French coasts continue to progress, and are not about to be forsaken, which is confirmed by the start of the high summer season.

Nice-Cannes: steady results for the first days of the season

Both occupancy rates and prices remained steady for 31 days, from June 15 to July 15. The OR is essentially neutral, albeit slightly positive with +0.35 points more than in the same period 2018. The ADR follows the same dynamic with an evolution of +0.15%, from €257.15 ex-VAT to €258.89 ex-VAT. The RevPAR is consequently up very slightly, to +0.57% or €216.88 ex-VAT.

The beginning of the season is marked each year by a professional event: the Cannes Lions. Also known as the International Festival of Creativity, this event was held from June 17 to 21 this year, and from June 18 to 22 last year. It is a global event to celebrate the creativity of brands, agencies, media and consulting companies. The year 2019 marked the 66th edition and was attended by more than 15,000 participants from all over the world. Cannes' hotel industry posts no vacancies every mid-June as it accommodates all these teams who are accompanying their company to the competition. Prices ranged from €300 to 400 ex-VAT, with a peak at €411.60 ex-VAT on the first day of the festival this year (€408.29 ex-VAT last year), yielding a RevPAR of €385.03 ex-VAT that same day, up by +7.09%.

In terms of occupancy, on June 20, 2019 the supply was filled to 94%, and from 90% (+1.78 pts) on the 21st and 93.55% (+5.49 pts) on the 17th. In other terms, performances were once again surpassed with respect to the previous edition, and hoteliers were able to benefit from this event by increasing their prices.

The rest of the period was mostly stable until July 15. Occupancy rates ranged between 71 and 88% in 2019. Prices nonetheless dropped to €184.94 ex-VAT the day after the festival on June 26, to climb again progressively to €265.06 ex-VAT on July 15.

More generally, the picture is all the more positive. The Côte d'Azur as a whole enjoyed a very good month of June, with an occupancy rate up +3.7 points, an ADR up +2.9%, and a RevPAR up +7.7%. Cannes and Nice, in particular, posted very good RevPARs this same month: €247.8 ex-VAT (+4.2%) for Cannes and €145.5 ex-VAT (+11.8%) for Nice.

Aix-Marseille: a slump in growth, even if the results are better

The agglomeration including the city of Marseille and its hinterland all the way to Aix-en-Provence posts positive results, although a slowdown in its progression may be felt. Last year, the change in the RevPAR was double digit (+14.26%) at the beginning of the high summer season. This year, it was stable at €84.38 ex-VAT, up +1.65%, as was the ADR, which is €101.12 (+1.3%). The average OR in 2019 is the same as in 2018: 83.44% (+0.28 pts over 2018) compared to 82.86% (+3.3 pts with respect to 2017). Rates do not change significantly on the period, even if they increase the week of June 17 to 23, which more or less corresponding to the dates of the Cannes Lions festival. The ADR then increased +5.56%, from €97.59 ex-VAT on June 17 to €122.65 ex-VAT on June 23.

Demand does not necessarily follow the same pattern as price fluctuations. Thus, the best occupancy rates are not achieved during the period when the prices are at their highest, but later in the month. Thus on Wednesday, June 26 of this year, the OR was 95.81% (+2.54 pts) while the ADR was €103.24 ex-VAT, on Saturday, July 6 the OR was 97.15% (+7.93 pts) and the ADR was €101.19 ex-VAT, finally, on Tuesday, July 9 the OR reached 98.28%, for a record increase of +12.9 points, while the ADR reached €104.97 ex-VAT, which is lower than the mid-June prices.

These performances show a trend for this market: it does not obey any particular rules, since the results do not show a regular pattern, contrary to the Biarritz-Bayonne market.

Biarritz-Bayonne: saw-toothed market results

As the city of Biarritz prepares to host the prestigious gathering of the world's 7 great leaders at the end of August, the Côte Basque-Adour conurbation (corresponding to the south of the Atlantic coast on the French side) reveals figures that fluctuate widely from one day to the next as the summer holiday begins. These results give a saw-toothed appearance to the whole.

The occupancy rate for the supply evolves two-fold on certain days. On Monday, June 17 (2019) with 41% occupancy, while the day before the OR was 84%. However, it would appear that this variation is cyclical and regular. Thus, every Monday during the period in 2019, the OR falls sharply: to 52% on Monday, June 24; to 54% on Monday, July 1; to 63% on Monday, July 8; and to 62% on Monday, July 15. On the other hand, the best performances were obtained every Sunday evening of the month: 84% on June 16; 88% on June 23; 92% on June 30; 90% on the first Sunday in July; and 89% on the second Sunday in July.

As for rates, they do not reflect this variation in occupancy. Thus, the increase in prices has the advantage and interest of offsetting the decline in the number of customers on certain days. But in reality, carried over the entire period, the average daily rate of €112.72 ex-VAT is down slightly by -2.00%. It is therefore offset by the occupancy rate, which, although highly fluctuating, increased by +3.61 pts. The occupancy of the supply over the period is estimated at 77.22%. The RevPAR also followed an uptrend, increasing by 2.81%, to €87.04 ex-VAT.


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