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Seville: the hotel industry reigns with the Iron Throne

Like the rest of Spain, Seville's hotel industry has fully benefited from its price-point appeal for foreign tourists and the rebound of buying power on the domestic market. But the Andalusian capital is also beginning to feel the effects of its improved renown that it won with the filming of Game of Thrones.

As the setting for season five of the television series Game of Thrones, which has an audience of more than 18 million, Seville has benefited from its newly acquired renown among international tourists. The Andalusian capital has opened up the gardens of its historic palace, the Alcazar, as the setting for the City of Dorne, much to the delight of the city's mayor, Juan Ignacio Zoido: "This film production will give Seville a great deal of publicity." Today this prediction has become a reality, and several Internet players in the travel industry (TripAdvisor and Skyscanner) have observed a clear increase in searches for the destination by their users since the last season of Game of Thrones was televised.

This new interest in the city of Seville has combined with Spain's overall price appeal, which is driving the growth of its tourism, to produce significant growth in activity on the sector since the beginning of the year. In the first five months of 2015, Andalusia has accommodated 972,891 tourists, up 7.76% over last year on the same period, according to data from the Tourist Office of Seville. Of these, 492,724, or more than half, were from abroad, while domestic clientele represented 480,167 visitors. The city's hotels fully benefited from this growth in demand, hosting 907,908 tourists, or 7.78% more than in the first five months of the year 2014. More than 1.8 million nights were realized on this period, a figure that is up by 10.8%.

Thanks to this growth in demand at the beginning of the year, Seville's hoteliers were able to improve their results, as demonstrated by data published by MKG Hospitality. From January to May 2015, growth in the Revenue per available room (RevPAR) is among the best recorded in Spain's cities, after Palma de Mallorca. This growth by about 19.9%, was driven by the 2.6 point improvement in the occupancy rate combined with particularly strong growth in average prices by 16.4%.

After Seville, other Spanish cities should also benefit from the filming of the Game of Thrones saga. Some scenes in season six should be filmed in Gerona, in Catalonia, and in Peniscola, in the Valencian Community. In addition to its Medieval monuments, Spain other key assets that attract the series' producers: the government has implemented a 15% tax reduction for foreign audiovisual productions filmed in the country, in hopes of benefiting from their multiple impacts.

Also read:

  • Game of Thrones: when tourism inherits the seven crowns
  • Spain reports new record arrivals in 2014
  • Andalousia: bullish trends in the land of corrida

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