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Sat 2 Mar 2019 01:15 AM

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Asian Cup drives Abu Dhabi hotel occupancy to 11-year Jan high

Abu Dhabi hotels report 78% occupancy despite market seeing double-digit supply growth

Asian Cup drives Abu Dhabi hotel occupancy to 11-year Jan high
Hotels in the UAE capital posted occupancy of 78 percent in January.

Abu Dhabi hotels reported their highest January occupancy rates for 11 years on the back of hosting the Asian Cup football tournament, according to new research.

Hotels in the UAE capital posted occupancy of 78 percent in January, up 1.9 percent on the same month last year despite the market seeing a double-digit hike in supply growth, STR data showed.

It also revealed that average daily rates (ADR) rose by 5.4 percent to AED449.72 while revenue per available room (RevPAR) jumped by 7.5 percent to AED350.88.

STR analysts said: "Even with supply growth of 11.2 percent, Abu Dhabi achieved its highest January occupancy since 2008. We credit a 13.4 percent spike in demand to the Asian Cup football championship."

In neighbouring Dubai, hotels saw a 5 percent drop in occupancy to 82 percent while ADR also slumped by 10.9 percent to AED716.78 and RevPAR fell by 15.3 percent to AED587.70 compared to the year-earlier month.

According to STR analysts, occupancy and rate declines are to be expected for the market with a significant amount of new inventory in the pipeline ahead of Expo 2020.

As of January, Dubai showed 170 projects in construction accounting for 48,759 rooms. At the same time, demand - room nights sold - grew for the fourth consecutive month, and overall performance was solid during the first five days of the month thanks to New Year’s celebrations as well as Arabplast international trade exhibition.

In the wider Middle East region, hotels reported a 0.9 percent fall in occupancy to 68.2 percent, while ADR decreased 8.9 percent to $154.18 and RevPAR dropped by 9.6 percent to $105.16.

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