GOOD NEWS FOR CHAUFFEURED OPERATORS: The U.S. hotel industry appears to be coming back this summer, mainly because of strengthening business travel.
New York so far is the biggest beneficiary of a hotel stay boomlet, although other cities on the East Coast are starting to report gains as well.
And the upscale, full-service hotels that have long been favored by business travelers have benefited more from the upturn in demand than the midlevel brands, industry analysts say.
The rebound, said Mark V. Lomanno, president of Smith Travel Research of Hendersonville, Tenn., is “top-down.” The more expensive hotels, he said, “are recovering the fastest, and will continue to do so this summer, as business travelers come back.”
With hotel occupancies rising, room rates have started stabilizing, according to Smith Travel Research. The rates remain substantially below their peak, reached in September 2008. And occupancy rates, in general, are also far below their peak: the average is now 55.8%, down from a high of 63.1% in November 2007.
HOTEL REBOUND ARTICLE HERE
Source: The New York Times