London & Partners says 2012 hotel occupancy remains strong

London & Partners CEO Gordon Innes expects average London hotel occupancy rates for summer 2012 to be on par with 2011, despite negative reports suggesting hotels are suffering as a result of the Games.

Hotels report London 2012 occupancy disappointment
Hotels report London 2012 occupancy disappointment

Hotels are being forced to slash rates as a result of disappointing occupancy levels with other tourist attractions and restaurants also reporting a slump caused by tourists staying away from London because of the Olympics.

Global hotel portal HRS revealed a significant drop in London hotel prices for stays during the Olympic fortnight. Since the end of June 2012, prices have decreased by an average of 32% and the average room price per night is down from £164 to £112.

Meanwhile, a report by Tripadvisor revealed that Britain’s promised influx of visitors during the Olympic Games has not transpired, with more than half of hotel respondents (58%) stating the event would have no effect long term.

Hoteliers are quoted as saying that the Olympics has made summer trading difficult. "Overseas custom is down significantly on last year" said one frustrated respondent, while a third owner said, "Olympics has been a non event for occupancy".

The Games have reportedly attracted up to 100,000 visitors a day to London, but the European Tour Operators Association says is below the normal summer peak of 300,000.

However, London & Partners' Innes said that while there are still plenty of reasonable hotel rooms out there with many of the rates are dropping on a daily basis, he expects occupancy levels to match last summers.

"According to the British Hotels Association, in London in 2011, the average hotel occupancy was 82.2% which was a very good year for London hotels. We believe the occupancy rate for this summer will be similar," he commented.
 
"Our aim is use the spotlight of the Games to attract more visitors to experience the city for themselves in 2013 and beyond to harness the additional long term tourism benefits that we estimated to be in the region of over £950m over the next 5 years."

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