China, India continue leading non-U.S. hotel development pipeline

WORLDWIDE China and India have the most hotel guestrooms under development of any country markets aside from the United States, according to the latest hotel development pipeline report from STR Global.

China ended January 101,118 guestrooms under construction, which represents more than half of all hotel inventory under construction across Asia Pacific. India ranks just behind China, at 31,104 guestrooms.

The total Asia Pacific hotel development pipeline comprises 1,104 hotels totaling 276,544 guestrooms. Other markets in the region with strong in-construction pipelines are Thailand (8,089), Vietnam (7,277) and Indonesia (5,103).

Europe is the next most active hotel development pipeline, with 747 hotels totaling 124,234 guestrooms. Among the key markets in the region, Stockholm and Istanbul have the highest share of rooms under construction compared to their total pipeline, while London has the most guestrooms in the construction phase (6,014).

In the Middle East and Africa region, which has a pipeline of 430 hotels totaling 117,300 guestrooms, Oman would report the largest increase in existing supply (up 74.4%) if every one of the 4,369 additional guestrooms in its total active pipeline opens. Other countries expecting significant increases to existing supply include: Bahrain (65.1% with 3,665 guestrooms in the pipeline), Qatar (65% with 5,204 guestrooms), United Arab Emirates (57.3% with 48,005 guestrooms) and Kuwait (50.1% with 3,038 guestrooms).

In Central and South America, the hotel development pipeline comprises 146 hotels and 22,438 guestrooms. “It is interesting to see that hotel development across Central/South America focuses on upscale and midscale properties, whereas in other developing tourism markets the higher-end brands enter key markets first,” says Elizabeth Randall, managing director of STR Global.

Two properties totaling 277 guestrooms opened in Central and South America during January. Overall in 2011, there are 68 more properties and 10,787 guestrooms expected to open, which would amount to a 48.1% increase in room supply in 2011. In 2012, the region is expecting 60 projects to open with 8,754 guestrooms, and in 2013, eight projects are expected to open with 1,752 guestrooms.

The hotel development pipeline for the Caribbean and Mexico comprises 128 hotels totaling 18,326 guestrooms. The upper-midscale segment accounts for the largest portion of the total active pipeline at 27.1%, followed by the upscale segment (20.5%). “The Caribbean/Mexico pipeline has remained steady in most chain scales according to January 2011 year-over-year comparisons,” says Lana Yoshii, vice president of content management at STR. “With financing difficult to come by, many projects are delaying construction.”