Hotels show resilience in tough year

North West hotels held occupancy rates steady through 2011, according to research from PKF Hotel Consultancy Services.

Manchester was in the strongest position, thanks to a busy events calendar and strong corporate and meetings, incentives, conferences & exhibitions market. Occupancy rates in the city rose 2.4% from 73.0% in 2010 to 74.8% in 2011. Room rate also rose 0.4% to £70.12 resulting in a 2.9% increase in room yield from £50.99 to £52.45.

Liverpool also fared well despite a 0.8% drop in room rate to £64.31. A 1.4% increase in occupancy from 70.1% to 71.0% helped the city achieve a 0.6% rise in rooms yield.

Blackpool saw a 1.0% drop in rooms yield to £39.10 as a result of a 0.5% fall in occupancy rates to 66.9% and a 0.5% decline in room rate to £58.45.

In Chester, a 0.8% increase in occupancy rates to 66.9% wasn't enough to stave off a 1.4% drop in rooms yield to £39.25, thanks to room rate falling 2.2% from £60.01 to £58.87.

Jane Jackson, partner at PKF, commented: "2011 was again a difficult year for hotels in the North West so it is actually positive to see most of the region's main destinations maintaining their position. Room rates were squeezed across the board, which despite consistent occupancy levels, had a knock on effect on rooms yield.

"Looking forward to 2012, I think hotels in the region will continue to have modest expectations. Given the economic turbulence, and no sign of any improvement in their core corporate markets, many will be relieved just to hold their own this year."

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