AHIC told the Middle East region is the world’s most buoyant hotel market

The Middle East was the world’s most buoyant hotel market in the year ending March 2014, STR Global managing director Elizabeth Winkle told the 10th Arabian Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC) at Dubai’s Madinat Jumeirah this morning.

“Some of the strongest ADRs (average daily room rates) across the world are to be found in the Middle East,” Winkle said. “Some of the strongest occupancies in the world are also in the region.”

Winkle said that Middle East markets with significant first quarter ADR rises were Dubai and Jeddah.

Winkle said occupancy growth of 10 per cent or more was recorded in the year ending March 2014 in Abu Dhabi, Amman, Doha and Manama. The ADR rate in all four markets were down on a year-on-year basis due to rising supply, particularly in Abu Dhabi.

Dubai has seen occupancy rates in the first quarter of 88 per cent. “Any market operating at an occupancy rate of more than 62 per cent is deemed to be operating very effectively,” Winkle said.

More than 18,000 new Middle East hotel rooms came on line in the year ending March 2014.

Winkle said that if every planned hotel came on line, there would be a 40 per cent rise in the number of Middle East hotel rooms. She said that there were almost 35,000 new rooms in the hotel pipeline in Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

“In Dubai there are 10,000 rooms under construction,” Winkle said.

AHIC is organised by Bench Events and MEED.