News for the Hospitality Executive
Hotel Waterpark Resort Industry Report
Growth Accelerates, Projects Get Bigger
|By Jeff Coy and Bill Haralson, February
During 2007, thirty-three (33) new hotel indoor waterparks opened. Eighty-three (83) hotel waterparks are under construction now or will break ground during 2008 --- including fifty-five (55) projects scheduled to open in 2008 and another twenty-three (23) that are slated to open in 2009-2010.
Hotels and resorts with indoor waterparks are a small but rapidly-growing segment of the lodging, recreation and entertainment business. Nationally, waterpark hotel rooms grew 20.9% in 2007 compared to ordinary hotel rooms at 1.4% growth. The following chart illustrates the growth over the last six years.
Nationally, these 169 properties have a total of 28,888 rooms, over 4.1 million square feet of indoor waterpark space and 511 meeting rooms covering 1.6 million square feet of meeting space. Today, about 48% of hotel waterparks are affiliated with a national franchise brand and 52% are independent.
Hotel waterparks are popular with families and hotel owners because they fill empty rooms at higher room rates than hotels without indoor waterparks.
Every year the construction pipeline gets bigger. And hotel waterpark projects keep getting bigger in size. Many are part of mixed-use resort destination developments that include conference centers, recreation, entertainment, retail shopping, offices and residential units.
Hotels and resorts have ups and downs. They are seasonal properties with high periods and low periods from month to month and from weekday to weekends. The indoor waterpark has an amazing ability to fill empty rooms with families and young children on weekends all year long and whenever kids are out of school. Yet a hotel waterpark resort is still just a hotel with a very expensive attraction, similar to having a golf course or conference center.
The indoor waterpark is a perfect component for the hotel owner that wants a balanced mix of customers --- individual business travelers, groups and individual leisure guests.
This Hotel Waterpark Resort Industry Report covers the following items:
The USA hotel industry occupancy reach 63.2% for 2007, just slightly under the 63.3% recorded for 2006 --- up from a low of 59.0% in 2002 and almost even with benchmark Year 2000.
Nationwide, hotel room rates reached an average of $103.64 in 2007, up from $97.89 in 2006, a low of $83.19 in 2002 and up from $86.04 in benchmark Year 2000.
In 2007, airport, urban and resort hotels ran the highest occupancies. Occupancy growth slowed for all hotels while resort occupancy declined one-half of one percent in 2007. Urban hotels and resorts recorded the highest average room rates at $148 and $143 respectively. Room rate growth remained strong for all hotels, with urban hotels achieving the biggest gains.
Recap of 2007
In the first half of 2007, hotel room supply grew 1.1% and accelerated to 1.5% during summer and 1.8% in the last three months compared to the same periods in 2006. Hotel projects that were funded in 2007 will continue to break ground during 2008.
Demand for hotel rooms grew 0.9% during the first half of 2007, accelerated to 2.5% during summer and then slowed to 1.3% in the last three months compared to the same periods in 2006.
Hotel occupancy was down 0.2% during the first half of 2007 compared to the first half of 2006. Summer 2007 occupancy was up 1.0% higher than Summer 2006. However, occupancy started to dwindle during the last three months of 2007 amidst news of a slowing economy.
While hotel occupancy softened, hotel average room rates remained strong throughout the year --- up 5.9% in 2007 over 2006. As a result, revenues per available room were up 5.5% during the first half of 2007, up 6.6% during Summer 2007 and up 5.7% for the Year 2007.
Most families in the USA bit the bullet on higher gasoline prices and refused to abandon their vacation plans. Many vacationed closer to home, ate fewer meals in restaurants and escaped for weekends to nearby regional resorts --- a growing number of which offered indoor waterparks and family entertainment centers.
Most Lucrative States for Hotel Investment
Currently, the most lucrative states for hotel investment are Hawaii, New York, Massachusetts, California and Alaska where hotel revenues are the highest in the nation.
New York, Alaska and Colorado had the biggest gains in revenues per available room.
Hotel revenue per available room (RevPAR) is the key indicator that takes into account supply, demand, occupancy, scarcity and pricing. RevPAR is a measure of asset productivity that often points developers to the most attractive locations for new construction, although many of these desirable locations also have high barriers to entry.
Most Desirable Hotel Markets
In 2007, the most desirable hotel markets, in terms of their ability to generate the highest revenues per available room were New York City, Oahu, Miami and San Francisco.
The biggest gains were made by New York City, San Francisco and Miami, which recorded double-digit hotel revenue growth.
USA Resort Performance
Hawaii is the leading resort destination with 75.3% occupancy (down 5.3% from last year) and $199 average room rate (up 6.8% over last year). This compares to occupancy of 66.1% and average room rate of $136 for all resorts in the USA.
Nevada, California and Arizona trail closely behind with occupancies of 71.2%, 69.3% and 66.3% respectively. Colorado recorded the biggest gain in occupancy at 3.6% while Hawaii recorded the biggest decline in occupancy versus last year. The highest resort room prices were found in Hawaii at $199, All USA Resorts at $136, California at $118, Florida at $117 and Nevada at $109. Hawaii, Colorado, California and Arizona all recorded price jumps of more than 6% in 2007 compared to 2006.
Florida, Colorado, Minnesota and Wisconsin achieved statewide occupancy under the national average for all USA Resorts. However, trends are shifting. Wisconsin and Minnesota have the highest number of hotel indoor waterpark resorts in the country, and a growing number of ski resorts are considering indoor waterpark projects to achieve year round revenues. Many of the top hotel waterpark resort properties record occupancies and room rates far above the national averages and equal to many of the Sunbelt resort destination states.
USA Hotel Waterpark Resort Performance
On January 1, 2007, there were 136 hotels in the USA with indoor waterparks --- from the smallest water features to the largest waterpark resorts.
During 2007, thirty-three (33) new additions opened, bringing the total to 169 hotel waterpark resorts open and operating in the USA at the end of 2007.
Another fifty-five (55) projects are under construction
now or will break ground during 2008 which are scheduled to open in 2008.
Realistically, some projects may slide into 2009.
The waterpark sector of the resort industry has experienced annual growth ranging from 22% to over 30% in each of the last seven years. Clearly, hotel waterpark resorts are not a fad but here to stay.
About 166 hotel waterpark projects were in the development pipeline at the end of 2007 compared to 108 in 2006, 121 in 2005, 69 in 2004, 46 in 2003 and 19 in 2002. In 2008, more than 200 projects are in the planning stages.
It is difficult to know how well hotel waterpark resorts perform financially as a group. Many of the larger independent properties do not report statistics to Smith Travel Research. Even the Wisconsin Dells Convention & Visitors Bureau collects little in the way of way of hotel waterpark resort performance data. The hotel owners keep their operating data fairly close to the vest. Great Wolf Resorts Inc is a public company and their operating data is available for all to see online in various SEC filings. Yet, two years ago, Great Wolf Resorts stopped reporting individual property data in favor of reporting same store comparisons, which effectively makes it more difficult for shareholders and other observers to determine how well individual hotels are performing. Regardless, Great Wolf Resorts performance is not necessarily the industry benchmark because they are being out-performed in several markets --- although they lead the industry in terms of multiple locations.
As a result, the best operating performance data
is in proprietary databases of a few consultants, appraisers and emerging
management companies with multiple locations. In 2001 Hotel Waterpark Resort
Research & Consulting was formed for the purpose of collecting, analyzing
and publishing data regarding this growing segment of the resort industry.
HWRRC is a collaborative effort of Jeff Coy of JLC Hospitality Consulting
of Cave Creek AZ and Bill Haralson of William L. Haralson & Associates
of Alto NM. Together the two consultants produce an Annual Industry Report,
a Construction Report and several developer workshops, where they present
their latest research and a variety of expert speakers.
Wisconsin Dells Hotel Performance
In 1990, before indoor waterparks, Wisconsin Dells ran a 40% annually hotel occupancy and had a 100-day peak season. Today, it has 21 hotels with indoor waterparks and has a 365-day peak season. The largest hotel waterpark resorts are running occupancies in the high 70s and low 80s --- 15 to 20 points above the national hotel average.
In 2002, hotels WITH indoor waterparks achieved 26 points higher occupancy and $69 higher average room rates than hotels WITHOUT indoor waterparks in Wisconsin Dells.
In 2004, we updated that research survey to determine the impact of 9/11, the economic recovery and what happened to the haves and have-nots in Wisconsin Dells over the last three years.
Eighteen (18) hotels WITH indoor waterparks captured 85% of the total market hotel revenue in Wisconsin Dells while forty-four (44) hotels WITHOUT indoor waterparks were left with only 15% of the total market hotel revenue. As a result, we referred to Wisconsin Dells as "the land of haves and have-nots."
In 2007, the top two hotel waterpark resorts achieved
average room rates above $200. Hotels WITH indoor waterparks recorded average
room rates that are 2X that of hotels WITHOUT indoor waterparks. And the
average room rate trend over the last three years is getting higher for
the haves and lower for the have-nots! The biggest properties
are gaining market share while the smaller properties continue to lose
USA Competitive Supply of Hotel Waterparks
One hundred and sixty-nine (169) hotel indoor waterparks are open and operating in the USA at the end of 2007. Here is a list of hotel waterpark resorts that opened in the following states since 2001:
Wisconsin and Minnesota continue to lead the nation in terms of the number of hotels with indoor waterparks with 55 and 22 respectively. Most hotel waterpark resorts are clustered in the upper Midwest while new construction is moving into the Ohio Valley, Middle-Atlantic and New England states as well as the northwest portion of the US. Gradually, growth is moving into the Sunbelt states. Texas already has 5 hotel waterpark properties.
Here is a list of the hotel waterpark resorts added
to the supply in 2007:
Chula Vista Resort owner Mike Kaminski embarked on a 4-year $200 million expansion plan that started in 2005. When the expansion is completed in 2009, Chula Vista Resort in Wisconsin Dells WI will have about 1000 condos and hotel rooms, 100,000 sf of waterpark and 200,000 sf of convention space. In 2007, Kaminski opened 150 new condos and an 80,000 sf sports dome that can handle conventions and major sporting events. Future plans call for a 150,000 sf conference center, a second 80,000 sf sports dome and major additions to his existing 80,000 sf indoor waterpark. Chula Vista is now positioned among the top three largest hotel waterpark resorts in the nation along with Kalahari Resort and Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort. You can reach Mike at 608-254-8366.
In August 2007, Sinbad Patel and Henry Desai opened their 22,000 sf Indoor Dome Waterpark connected to their 106-room Holiday Inn in Toledo-Maumee OH. This is the first indoor waterpark using the thin-shell concrete dome concept offered by Dome Technology Inc of Idaho Falls ID --- a company that has built domed storage, domed centers, churches, schools and homes for years. You can reach Dan South at Dome Technology by calling 208-529-0833 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In September 2007, Wave Development Inc opened its 60,000 sf Coco Key indoor waterpark at the Holiday Inn Omaha Central, a hotel it purchased earlier. Coco Key is designed as a 1930s-style Key West with two body slides, two raft slides, three smaller slides, a lazy river, hot tub, climbing structure, tipping water bucket, kiddie pool and arcade. The hotel has 383 rooms and features 29 meeting rooms totaling 46,318 sf of meeting space. The property is managed by Wave Development’s partner, Sage Hospitality Resources of Denver CO. You can reach Tiffany Woodward at 414-226-1950 or email email@example.com.
Focus Enterprises of Valparaiso IN opened its 154-room Splash Universe Resort and 25,000 sf indoor waterpark in Shipshewana IN in October. The $35 million project includes a Town Center and auto museum where Eldon Hostetler’s $5 million car collection is housed. This is another example of a hotel indoor waterpark as part of a mixed-use project including town center and a tourist attraction. Dean Morgan is vice president of Splash Universe Waterpark Resorts, a division of Focus Enterprises. You can talk to him at 219-531-2500 ext 2 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In September 2007, Mike Gallegos, a New Mexico native and president of San Diego-based American Property Management Inc reopened the former Park Plaza as a new 314-room Radisson Resort & Waterpark in Albuquerque NM. Gallegos spent $20 million on the renovation, new 23,000 sf indoor waterpark and separate 6,000 sf building which houses a two-person surfing simulator called a Flowrider. This cutting-edge waterpark will utilize music, lights and video to entertain its guests. The waterpark features two waterslides that go outside the building then reenter it. A mezzanine offers pizza, ice cream and a video arcade. Ramaker & Associates of Sauk City WI provided the waterpark design, mechanical, electrical and plumbing design. In addition, there’s 30,000 sf of convention space. You can reach Mike Gallegos at 858-964-5500 or email email@example.com.
In December 2007, Todd Nelson more than doubled the size of his Kalahari Resort in Sandusky OH --- making it the nation’s largest hotel indoor waterpark. Nelson added 288 new rooms, bringing the total to 884 and making it the largest hotel in Ohio. The indoor waterpark more than doubled in size from 80,000 sf to its current 173,000 sf. Features include 12,000 sf wave pool, a 4-lane Mat Racer slide where racers can compete with fellow racers, a bowl funnel slide and a second FlowRider, where surfers can ride a sheet of water flowing under them. Kalahari Resort Sandusky OH is the site of a Developer’s Workshop, called Developing & Financing Hotel Waterpark Resorts, scheduled for February 28 & 29, 2008. To register, go to www.hotelwaterparkworkshop.com. Kalahari owner Todd Nelson recently announced the construction of his third waterpark resort in Fredericksburg VA. You can reach Todd at 608-254-3750.
In December 2007, Great Wolf Resorts Inc opened
its 402-room Great Wolf Lodge and 80,000 sf indoor waterpark in Grapevine
TX. Called Bear Track Landing, the indoor waterpark features 6 pools, 9
waterslides, a 12-level climbing structure, a 1000-gallon tipping water
bucket and an enclosed 6-story Howlin Tornado extreme funnel ride.
For the first time, Great Wolf will offer its teenage guest a dedicated
tech center with a Tech Jockey concierge to help with internet stations,
karaoke staging, movies and musical entertainment. The resort also offers
an 84,000 sf outdoor waterpark. Great Wolf Resorts Inc will open its next
property at Grand Mound WA in March 2008 in partnership with the Chehalis
Tribe of Indians. Future projects have been announced for Charlotte NC,
Bloomington MN, Mashantucket CT and Lake Lanier GA. Talk to John Emery,
ceo of Great Wolf Resorts Inc, at 608-251-6400.
Major Transactions in 2007
The Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort in Wisconsin Dells WI is number one in terms of the most indoor waterpark space, but their 229,000 sf is divided among four separate waterparks they have on site.
Kalahari Resort Sandusky OH is number one in terms
of the largest (173,000 sf) indoor waterpark under one roof.
Although it not considered a hotel waterpark, Harrah’s new 172,000 sf Domed Pool at their Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City NJ is worthy of consideration as a major indoor water feature.
Kalahari Resort Wisconsin Dells WI is listed fourth with 125,000 sf of indoor waterpark space, and Chula Vista Resort is fifth with 110,000 sf.
Hotels with the largest indoor waterparks are concentrated
in Wisconsin Dells WI but the trend is moving nationwide.
Profile of USA Hotel Waterpark Resorts by Number of Rooms
Among the Top 5 largest resorts by room count, the
average number of hotel rooms is 954 with an indoor waterpark of 117,800
sf. The Top 5 resorts have an average of 7.2 waterslides, 2.0 pools and
1.8 hot tubs. All of them have one or more lazy rivers, 80% have a wave
pool and 40% have a water coaster. The Top 5 resorts average 88,766 sf
of meeting space and 42 meeting rooms. The Top 5 hotel waterpark resorts
in 2007 have more rooms, bigger waterparks, more water features and more
meeting space than the Top 5 resorts in 2006. Several of the Top 5 have
condos pre-sold to individuals that are part of the hotel rental pool.
Among the next ten largest (Top 6-15) hotel waterpark resorts, the average number of rooms is 424 with an indoor waterpark of 75,500 sf.
Among the top resorts ranked 16-25 by room count, the average number of rooms is 320 with an indoor waterpark of 35,800 sf. Using the chart above, the waterpark developer can estimate the size of his hotel, indoor waterpark and its components. Depending upon size, all hotel waterpark resorts average from 2-8 waterslides, 2-4 pools and 1-2 hot tubs.
Almost all of the Top 25 Largest Hotel Waterpark Resorts have a lazy river while less than half of the smaller resorts have them.
About 80% of the Top 5 Largest Hotel Waterpark Resorts have a wave pool and less than 10% of the smaller resorts have them. Wave pools, while very attractive to surfers, take up a lot of space for the smaller number of guests who can use them. However, they generate a lot of entertainment value for spectators, and ski resorts seem to love them.
The Top 50 Largest Hotel Waterpark Resorts are clearly in the meetings & convention business to balance their seasonal and weekend-weekday mix of business.
Profile of USA Hotel Waterpark Resorts by Size of Waterpark
Hotels with the highest number of rooms don’t always have the largest waterparks. And vice versa. While there are many factors that determine sizing, a rule of thumb is the rooms to waterpark ratio. A direct relationship exists between the number of hotel rooms and the size of the indoor waterparks.
For example, hotels with indoor waterparks more than
70,000 square feet average 488 rooms and 114,083 square feet of indoor
waterpark --- a ratio of 234 sf of waterpark per guest room. That ratio
decelerates as waterparks get smaller.
To illustrate, hotels with waterparks 40,000 to 49,999
sf average 332 rooms and 42,625 sf of indoor waterpark --- a ratio of 187
sf per guest room. Notice that hotels with about 100 rooms vary widely
in the sizes of their indoor waterparks. Hotel owners and developers can
use the chart above to help size their projects.
Top Hotel Meeting Facilities with Indoor Waterparks in the USA
Among the Top 15 Hotel Meeting Facilities with an indoor waterpark, the number of rooms varies from 194 to 884 and the meeting facilities vary from 30,000 to 150,000 square feet.
Several of the largest hotel waterpark resorts are in the meetings & convention business. The Chula Vista Resort in Wisconsin Dells WI is clearly the largest meeting facility (150,000 sf) with a 110,000 sf indoor waterpark and 616 rooms.
The Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells WI is the second largest meeting facility (125,000 sf) with a 125,000 sf indoor waterpark and 738 rooms.
The 194-room Grand Harbor Resort in Dubuque IA, with 25,000 sf indoor waterpark, is connected to a 120,000 sf convention center that it operates for the city.
The Kalahari Resort in Sandusky OH has the fourth
largest meeting facility (95,000 sf) but has the largest indoor waterpark
(173,000 sf) and the most rooms (884) of any hotel waterpark resort in
These hotel waterpark resorts obviously target the individual leisure traveler segment. But these properties have the advantage of targeting another customer segment --- the group market --- to fill in hotel low periods and weekdays when kids are in school. Hotel waterpark resorts with substantial amounts of meeting space run higher annual occupancies than those with little or no meeting space.
Emerging Multi-Unit Owners
Of 169 hotel waterparks open at the end of 2007, 81 are affiliated with a national hotel brand while 88 are independent.
Brand names include AmericInn, Baymont, Best Western, Comfort Suites, Country Inn & Suites, Days Inn Hawthorn Suites, Hilton, Howard Johnson, Holiday Inn, Marriott, Microtel, Nickelodeon, Quality Inn, Radisson, Ramada, Sheraton, Sleep Inn, Super 8 and Wingate.
Whether or not to affiliate with a brand is a major issue in this product sector of the hotel industry. Properties in resort locations tend to be independent while properties in urban, suburban and highway locations tend to be franchised.
We counted the Great Wolf Resorts as branded properties starting in 2005 as they are considered an emerging brand in the hotel waterpark resort industry. Great Wolf Resorts Inc signed a license agreement with Ripley’s Entertainment for its Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls, Ontario --- which is a first step in becoming a franchisor in the hotel waterpark resort industry.
We counted the two Kalahari Resorts as independents, although this familiar name is another emerging national brand as they build their third project in Fredericksburg VA.
Wave Development Inc of Milwaukee WI, in partnership with Sage Hospitality of Denver CO and Horizon Construction of Milwaukee WI, have created an emerging brand of indoor waterparks called CoCo Key Resorts in six locations that are open and two locations under construction. Of the eight locations, four are affiliated with Sheraton, one with Holiday Inn and one with Marriott.
When indoor waterparks first emerged, developers had to educate the major hotel chains about the concept. Now two hotel chains, Marriott and Holiday Inn, are creating indoor waterpark prototypes.
Marriott announced it would participate with Nickelodeon
to build up to 20 specialty resorts using SpongeBob SquarePants to attract
the family market. Holiday Inns (IHG) is working on prototypes for converting
holidomes into indoor waterparks, adding new indoor waterparks to existing
hotels and building a new brand of waterpark resorts.
Hotel Waterparks Scheduled to Open in 2008
Fifty-five (55) hotel waterpark projects are under
construction or will break ground in 2008. While these 55 projects were
all scheduled to open in 2008, some are still not funded and may be delayed.
Canadian Supply of Hotel Waterparks
In Canada, we identified 114 hotel indoor waterparks that are open and operating in 2007. Most are located in the western provinces. World Waterpark at the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta is the largest indoor waterpark in the world. The Mall is the largest shopping center in the world, according the Guinness Book of World Records. However, three newer, larger shopping malls in Beijing, Manila and Dubai are now claiming this title.
The Fantasyland Hotel at West Edmonton Mall was built in 1986 with 355 rooms. Technically, the Fantasyland Hotel is not a hotel waterpark, but it is closely connected. You can walk from the hotel through the mall to the 217,800 sf World Waterpark without going outside. So, the largest hotel in Canada associated with an indoor waterpark is the Fantasyland Hotel in West Edmonton.
In Canada, hotel waterparks are different than in
the USA. Many are really indoor pools that have been enlarged and enhanced
with waterslides and water playthings. Many of the indoor waterparks in
Canada are under 10,000 sf while many in the USA are over 10,000 sf.
Top 15 Canadian Hotel Waterparks by Size of Waterpark
While the 217,800 sf World Waterpark is not really
a hotel waterpark, it is situated very closely to hotel rooms located at
the West Edmonton Mall. And the 355-room Fantasyland Hotel is part of that
same mall --- making a connection between the hotel and the waterpark.
The second largest hotel waterpark in Canada is the Americana Resort & Conference Center, which opened its 19,100 sf indoor waterpark in 2004 --- attached to its 160 guest rooms and 16,000 sf conference center in Niagara Falls ON.
Third largest is Travelodge World Hotel in Ottawa, which also opened its 13,000 sf indoor waterpark in 2004 --- connecting with its 177 guest rooms.
In Canada, the biggest concentration of hotel indoor waterparks is in the Economy Hotel sector, where room counts are typically under 100 rooms and indoor waterparks are less than 5,000 sf.
Under Construction in Canada
Hotel Waterpark Resort projects under construction or breaking ground in 2008 include: (1) Hecla Oasis Resort & Indoor-Outdoor Waterpark (former Gull Harbour) on Hecla Island in Winnipeg, Manitoba; and (2) Hotel Waterpark at Lac Mirabel Proposed Shopping Mall in Montreal, Quebec.
In the Planning Phase in Canada
Winnipeg’s Mayor is trying to attract a private developer
to build a 250 room hotel with a 50,000 sf indoor waterpark to open in
Mexico & Caribbean Supply of Hotel Waterpark Resorts
While most waterparks in Mexico tend to be outdoor waterparks, we have identified a few that are indoor-outdoor combinations with onsite, adjacent or nearby lodging that would tend classify them as hotel waterpark resorts.
During 2007, Kerzner opened his Phase III 600-room Cove & Aquaventure along with new condominiums in Nassau, Bahamas.
In the development and planning stages are: (1) Baha
Mar Resort & Eco Waterpark in Nassau with 3500 rooms, and (2) Harmony
Cove Hotel Spa Residences & Waterpark in Trelawny on the north coast
of Jamaica with 2,000 rooms.
Rest of World Supply of Hotel Waterpark Resorts
We identified hotel waterpark resort projects around
the world that opened in 2007, are under construction during 2008 and are
in the development-planning process.
Based on our review of consumer behavior, lifestyle changes and travel trends in North America, here are Our Predictions on the Future of Resort Development. Recent news announcements indicate that these predictions are becoming reality at an accelerating pace.
More than 211,000 hotel rooms were in the pipeline as of December 2007, a 35.5% increase from 156,000 rooms in the pipeline a year earlier, according to Smith Travel Research. Hotels that received funding during the easy money period of 2007 will be under construction during 2008 and 2009.
The 2008 Lodging Industry Construction Pipeline stood
at 718,000 hotel rooms at the end of 2007 --- up 36% over the previous
year. Hotel rooms were growing at a rate 2.2%. The new hotel room supply
growth is forecast at 2.8% for 2008 and 3.4% for 2009 taking into account
anticipated market conditions, according to Lodging Economics.
From Easy Money to the New Reality
In January 2007, Morgan Stanley Real Estate spent $6.6 billion to acquire CNL Hotels & Resorts, an unlisted REIT that owns a share of two Great Wolf Lodge waterparks in Wisconsin Dells and Sandusky OH.
During the first half of 2007, investors were hungry for hotels. It was a period of easy money. In the second half of 2007, there were signs of a slowing economy --- due to higher fuel costs, higher construction costs, a residential mortgage crisis and negative news that started to affect hotel lending. Almost overnight, the period of easy money ended.
In 2008, there’s still lots of capital, but it’s
back to reality in terms of tougher underwriting standards. Hotel industry
occupancy in the USA has flattened at 63.2% but average room rates continue
to grow 5% to 6% annually. Hotels with indoor waterparks typically outperform
ordinary hotels in terms of higher occupancy, higher room rates and higher
revenues. A weaker US dollar is attracting more international visitors
to the USA, which is good for the hotel, travel and attractions industry.
For more information regarding project feasibility, supply and demand, contact Jeff Coy at 480-488-3382. Coy heads JLC Hospitality Consulting of Cave Creek AZ. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.jeffcoy.com. Or contact Bill Haralson at 505-802-1522. Haralson heads William L. Haralson & Associates of Alto NM. Email email@example.com or go to www.wlha-inc.com.
|Also See:||Hotel Waterpark Resort Industry Report 2007; 48 Hotel Waterparks Opening, 97 Under Construction / Jeff Coy and Bill Haralson / July 2007|
|Hotel Waterparks Construction Report 2008; 33 Hotel Waterparks Opened in 2007, 55 Scheduled for 2008 / February 2008|