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Sat 16 Jan 2016 01:09 AM

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Abu Dhabi hotels see occupancy, rates fall in December

Latest STR Global data shows supply has overtaken demand in UAE capital's hospitality sector

Abu Dhabi hotels see occupancy, rates fall in December

Hotels in Abu Dhabi are set to post decreases in occupancy and rates during December, according to new figures.

STR Global’s preliminary December 2015 data indicates decreases in several performance metrics when compared with the same month last year.

Based on daily data from December, Abu Dhabi reported a 4.4 percent increase in supply and only a 1.5 percent rise in demand.

The STR Global figures also showed that occupancy rates at hotels in the UAE capital fell by 2.8 percent last month to 76 percent compared to the same month in 2014.

Average daily rates dropped by nearly seven percent to AED546.18 while a 9.4 percent decrease in revenue per available room to AED415.35 was also reported.

STR Global said in a statement: "Abu Dhabi experienced a slow December with difficult-to-match comparisons from 2014, when RevPAR grew by 19.8 percent. Year to date, demand has outpaced supply in the market, although supply has outpaced demand over the last two months.

"Considering Abu Dhabi’s exceptional demand growth rates - which over a three-year period peaked at 33.4 percent in August 2013 - STR Global analysts expected this trend would eventually wear off after supply caught up with demand."

Last month, a new cruise terminal opened in Abu Dhabi, marking a "step change" in the emirate's tourism ambitions to become one of the world's top winter sun destinations.

Zayed Port’s new permanent terminal, a major landmark for cruise tourism in the Gulf, will serve as a major facilitator in boosting the cruise tourism sector.

Zayed Port will witness a fivefold increase in the number of passengers and ships during the 2015/2016 season compared to the first cruise season of 2006-2007.

Growth projections for the cruise tourism sector in the emirate anticipate more than 300,000 passengers by the 2019-2020 season.

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