Mideast/Africa RevPAR up slightly despite 13% occupancy drop

MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA Hotels in the Middle East and Africa region reported mixed year-over-year performance results during February, with ADR and RevPAR growing despite a significant drop in occupancy.

The region’s occupancy ended the month down 12.6% to 56.7%, but ADR grew 17.1% to US$188.5, and RevPAR was up 2.3% to US$106.92, according to STR Global data.

“This month we see the impact of the demonstrations and political changes across the Middle East and Northern Africa,” says Elizabeth Randall, managing director of STR Global. “Northern Africa dropped substantially in occupancy as visitors stayed away. Egypt’s occupancy dropped 78.5% to a monthly average of 15.9%.”

In Lebanon, the recent collapse of the national unity government and the indictments by the Hariri tribunal have impacted the stability of the market and resulted in a drop in occupancy to 39% in February. In Bahrain, occupancy levels stayed at 61%, dropping 17%.

Abu Dhabi experienced the region’s largest occupancy increase, rising 27.3% to 74.1%. Two markets posted double-digit occupancy decreases: Cairo (down 80.1% to 14.6%) and Beirut (down 46.7% to 37.4%).

Two markets achieved double-digit ADR increases: Cairo (up 24.8% to US$157.42) and Cape Town (up 13.6% to US$174.75). Beirut fell 22.7% in ADR to US$187.05, reporting the largest decrease in that metric.

Four markets experienced RevPAR increases of more than 15% during February: Abu Dhabi (down 21.4% to US$164.22), Cape Town (down 19.6% to US$128.35), Muscat (down 18.7% to US$210.81) and Riyadh (down 17.4% to US$210.18).