Hotel Online  Special Report



 The Top Ten Performing International Hotel Markets - 
Highest Occupancy, Average Room Rate
and RevPAR in 2003


February 20, 2004 - With award ceremonies galore this week in London, we felt it only right that the hotel industry should not miss out. In a year that has seen a number of markets across the world reporting record revenue per available room (revPAR) declines in 2003, it is all too easy to lose sight of those that are doing well.

The HotelBenchmark Survey by Deloitte tracks the performance of over 320 markets globally. The tables below show the top ten markets reporting the highest occupancy, average room rate and revPAR in 2003. Rankings display how each market has performed annually back to 2000 illustrating how the events of the last four years have affected global hotel performance.

Given such turbulent trading conditions one might have expected a lot of movement within the global top ten over the past four years. Results however show that 9 of the 10 markets reporting the highest revPAR in 2000 were amongst the highest achievers in 2003. Kuwait City has made the largest leap, claiming the award as the only new city to enter the 2003 revPAR top ten.

Top ten global hotel markets

Venice puts the boot in, kicking Geneva off the top revPAR spot

2003 saw Venice resume her title as the market with the highest revPAR globally, followed by Kuwait City and then Geneva. Italy continued to dominate the top ten in 2003 – with Venice, Rome and Florence all represented.

There was a noticeable decline in the number of Asian markets in 2003, within only Tokyo making an appearance. In 2002, Tokyo, Seoul and Osaka were all represented.

There was good news for London, which made it back into the top ten in 2003, after falling out last year. At number ten however London is still a long way off the enviable number three position it occupied back in 2000.

Kuwait City reports the highest occupancy globally

Kuwait City’s performance in 2003 certainly deserves praise. Each year the city has moved up the ranks but in 2003 it rocketed past the competition. Whilst Kuwait City typically commands one of the highest average room rates of the 320 markets tracked, its occupancy levels are normally amongst the lowest. Over the past four years Kuwait City has seen hotel occupancy move from 45 percent in 2000 to 85 percent in 2003 – taking it from 143rd position to the number one slot.

Australian cities, Brisbane and Perth achieved the second and third highest occupancy levels globally in 2003. Impressive performance given that in 2000 both these cities were outside the top 30.

The UK had three cities that ranked amongst those reporting the highest occupancies in 2003 – Gatwick, Edinburgh and York. This is the most markets the UK has had represented since 200, Gatwick however is the only market that has put in an appearance every year since 2000.

Milan’s average room rate makes its first appearance

Whilst there has been a lot jostling for position in terms of occupancy, average room rate rankings have remained fairly static over the past four years. 2003 however saw Milan make its first appearance in the top ten average room rate rankings during this period. This makes Milan the fourth Italian city to appear in the top ten. Notable absences this year include Seoul, absent for the first year and London, which has failed to put in an appearance for the second consecutive year since 2001.

Of the 320 markets tracked, the good news is that the global top ten revPAR rankings have not changed significantly over the past four years. Whilst average room rate rankings have remained fairly static, occupancy rankings have mirrored the unpredictability of the macro-environment. Even with significant changes in the occupancy rankings, the fact that 9 of 10 cities from the year 2000 remain in the 2003 revPAR top ten shows that stability can exist even within a volatile operating environment.

Notes: All analysis in US Dollars.

The HotelBenchmark Survey contains the largest independent source of hotel performance data outside of North America and tracks the performance of over 6,000 hotels and 1.1 million rooms every month. Monthly surveys are produced on the following areas:

  • Four regional rate and occupancy surveys covering Asia-Pacific, Caribbean & Latin America, Europe and the Middle East & Africa.
  • Eight country/city rate and occupancy surveys for Australia, Belgium & The Netherlands, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, UK and London.
  • Profitability surveys on Germany and London.
  • On an annual basis we produce profitability surveys tracking performance across all regions of the world.

 HotelBenchmark Survey
Mindi Holtsmark
+44 (0) 20 7007 1235
Also See: Asian Hotel Market: A Very Fragile Recovery Process / HotelBenchmark Special Report / April 2003
International Occupancy and Rate Report / November 2002 / Deloitte & Touche / Jan 2003

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