Check in! – hotel highlights across EMEA

The Blue Swan Daily brings you a round up of the latest key hotel news from across Europe, Middle East and Africa.


Summary:

  • Principal plans to ‘administer a shot of adrenaline to the heart of London’s most literary neighbourhood’ with new Russell Square hotel
  • Europe sees growth across all hotel performance metrics in Oct-2017
  • The Sheraton brand makes its debut in Nizhny Novgorod
  • Egypt and Kenya at opposite ends of the hotel performance league in Oct-2017

Principal plans to ‘administer a shot of adrenaline to the heart of London’s most literary neighbourhood’ with new Russell Square hotel
A renovation and restoration of the former Hotel Russell, a Grade II* listed building which occupies the eastern flank of Russell Square in Bloomsbury, will be completed in the coming months and will open as the Principal London early next year, adding to its collection of high-quality properties  based in landmark buildings. The company describes restoring the glamorous, grande dame to its original glory will “administer a shot of adrenaline to the heart of London’s most literary neighbourhood”. The hotel dates back to the late 19th Century having first opened its doors as the Frederick Hotels Company in 1898. Its modern form maintains its historic character while delivering all that is expected by the modern traveller. The property will consist of 334 guest rooms, two restaurants, bar and coffee house, as well as a selection of nine meeting rooms and event spaces that cater for up to 450 people, including a full restoration of the listed ballroom. The opening of The Principal London is the latest offering from the new, high-end urban lifestyle hotel group and follows recent property openings in Edinburgh, Manchester and York following the sensitive restoration of historic hotels. The collection also includes hotels in Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds and Oxford, with plans in place to add properties in Birmingham and Liverpool.

Europe sees growth across all hotel performance metrics in Oct-2017
Europe’s hotel industry reported positive results in the three key performance metrics during October 2017, according to latest data from STR. Occupancy rates across the Continent rose +1.7% versus the same month last year to 76.0% based on constant currency comparisons. The average daily rate (ADR) per room rose +4.0% to EUR112.75, while the revenue per available room (RevPAR) grew +5.8% to EUR85.68 during the same comparison periods. On a country level STR highlights Czech Republic’s performance during the month with the Eastern European nation reporting its highest ever October occupancy level on record reaching 84.3% up +3.6% on Oct-2016. ADR also rose +4.1% to CZK2,334.36, while RevPAR: increased +7.8% to CZK1,968.95. Levels were lifted by performance in the capital, Prague, which also set an October occupancy record of 89.9%, according to the benchmarking specialists.

The Sheraton brand makes its debut in Nizhny Novgorod
Sheraton Hotels & Resorts has announced the opening of Sheraton Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin, marking the brand’s debut in one of Russia’s largest cities. Situated on the confluence of River Oka with the River Volga, Nizhny Novgorod is recognised as an important economic, educational and cultural centre in the vast Volga-Vyatka region, with significant tourism potential. The hotel, with 176 guestrooms and suites, is located close to the Nizhny Novgorod Kremlin fortress and the fashion boutiques on Bolshaya Pokrovskaya Street, in the city’s historic quarter and close to an abundance of cultural and heritage attractions. Marriott International currently operates 25 hotels throughout Russia across 10 brands. By end of 2018, the company expects to boost its presence with eight more hotels slated to open in Krasnodar, Moscow, Rostov-On-Don, Saransk. Sochi, and Voronezh.

Egypt and Kenya at opposite ends of the hotel performance league in Oct-2017
While latest analytics from benchmarking specialists STR show that hotel performance improved across Africa in Oct-2017, there are clear geographical differences across the Continent. Overall, occupancy in Africa increased +7.6% versus Oct-2016 to 62.5%, while average daily rate (ADR) per room rose +8.4% to USD105.89 and revenue per available room (RevPAR) grew a notable +16.7% to USD66.14 during the same comparison periods. Egypt has seen a significant rise across the performance metrics as the devaluation of the Egyptian pound led to the highest October ADR value on record for the country. Occupancy growth of +32.0% to 57.0% was also inflated by a comparison with Egypt’s second-worst October occupancy month on record last year (43.2% in Oct-2016). However, it is clear that the country continues to recover from security concerns, and demand based on room nights sold has grown by double digits in nine of 10 months in 2017, according to STR. ADR increased +73.6% to EGP1,151.26 and RevPAR grew +129.3% to EGP656.07 in Oct-2017. At the other end of the scale Kenya has recorded its lowest October occupancy level on record with a -26.4% decline in Oct-2017 to 40.7%, while ADR fell line with recent trends – down -10.7% to KES11,937.82. According to STR analysts, political struggles in the country have taken their toll on hotel demand with the steepest daily RevPAR declines last month occurring on the days around the national election. In total RevPAR fell -34.2% to KES4,861.17.