STR’s global bubble chart update for 2022 shows resilient performance and plenty of momentum to face a challenging 2023 ahead. Almost half of the STR-defined markets around the world fully recovered revenue per available room (RevPAR) to 2019 levels.

Among the 64 countries with room supply of more than 50,000 rooms, Jamaica, Israel, Cyprus, Switzerland, and Singapore were the top five performers on an absolute RevPAR basis in 2022. In most regions, performance was driven more by hotel prices while occupancy lagged pre-pandemic levels. Israel led all countries with an average daily rate (ADR) of more than US$300.

On the downside, each of the bottom five RevPAR countries were in Asia, due to lengthy pandemic restrictions. That list included China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

In terms of performance versus 2019, 28 of the 64 countries with supply above 50,000 rooms recorded growth in RevPAR. Only three of those countries recorded improvements in occupancy, however, as gains were driven primarily by ADR. A total of 48 countries recorded growth in that measurement, namely Egypt highlighted by the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) and Qatar with the FIFA World Cup. While events drive significant ADR growth in select periods, inflation and unstable currency also drove ADR up in countries like Egypt and Turkey.

At a market-level, 167 of 351 markets with supply of more than 15,000 rooms surpassed their 2019 RevPAR comparable. Red Sea Resorts, Qatar, Turkish Riviera, Italy Central and Northern Territory (Australia) were amongst the top 5 performing markets in terms of RevPAR. Again, RevPAR growth in these markets was mostly a result of incremental gains in ADR. Red Sea Resorts, which directly benefited from hosting COP27 in November, saw its ADR grow by almost 250% versus 2019.

Most of the performance growth also came later in 2022. In the first half of the year, less than one third of hotels reported their RevPAR recovered versus 2019 whereas in the second half of the year, close to two-third of the world’s market had reached that point.

The pace of recovery was mostly dragged down by Asia Pacific performance as the region saw a significant drop in both occupancy and ADR. Macau, Vietnam Central & North, Beijing, Kyoto and Philippines Provincial were among the bottom performers in RevPAR. Those markets were heavily affected by the lack of outbound Chinese tourists, especially Macau, which saw its ADR fall by more than 50% and its occupancy down 70%.

The good news for Asia Pacific in 2023 is that China has removed its COVID restrictions, and surrounding markets could reasonably expect the return of Chinese travelers. We would expect to see some signs of the resurgence of Chinese travelers during the next version of our bubble chart update.

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