Revealed: which Gulf hotel markets saw Ramadan boost?

Ras Al Khaimah shows the best overall performance growth in local currency with a 7.3% increase in revenue per available room
Revealed: which Gulf hotel markets saw Ramadan boost?
By Sam Bridge
Sat 30 Jun 2018 10:12 AM

Dubai, Makkah, Ras Al Khaimah were the only major hotel markets in the Middle East to register occupancy growth when comparing the Ramadan 2018 period with the dates of Ramadan 2017, according to an analysis by STR.

Ras Al Khaimah showed the best overall performance growth in local currency with an increase in revenue per available room (RevPAR) of 7.3 percent.

Ras Al Khaimah was also the only market with significant growth in average daily rate (ADR) of 6.9 percent, STR added.

In contrast, hotels in Bahrain's capital, Manama, witnessed decreases in all performance indicators as occupancy fell 2.3 percent, ADR dropped by 9.4 percent and RevPAR slumped by 11.5 percent.

“For a majority of hoteliers in the Middle East, the month of Ramadan is seen as a period of waning hotel performance,” said Philip Wooller, STR’s area director for the Middle East and Africa.

“With the exception of the holy cities, demand for accommodation usually bottoms out compared with the rest of the year. That lack of demand extended to the aviation industry this Ramadan period with Emirates Airlines grounding 20 aircraft and British Airways cancelling its direct service between London and Abu Dhabi.”

Wooller said that in absolute values, the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah once again reported the highest Ramadan occupancy levels at 74 percent and 73 percent, respectively.

“Hotel performance during Ramadan 2018 was mostly a continuation of year-to-date trends for most of the destinations in our analysis,” Wooller said.

“Performance was inferior to Ramadan 2017; however, there were highlights such as the occupancy increase in Dubai despite the new hotel supply that has entered the marketplace over the past year.

"Hotels in Qatar and Makkah also registered occupancy growth, but that came at a cost with significantly lower room rates.”

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