Huge demand for Glasgow hotels, but Aberdeen’s problems continue

By Liam Garrahan contact

- Last updated on GMT

Glasgow's hotel industry saw large growth in June.
Glasgow's hotel industry saw large growth in June.

Related tags: Scotland

Glasgow’s hotel industry is booming according to LJ Research’s latest monthly report for June, although Aberdeen continues to struggle.

The LJ Forecaster Scottish Intercity Report  said that, due to large business and leisure events, Scotland’s second city saw demand for hotel beds rise as room occupancy reached 92.7 per cent, a 7.4 per cent growth on June 2014’s figures. Edinburgh’s hotel occupancy for the month was 90.9 per cent, while Aberdeen’s occupancy dropped from 13.5 per cent from last June to 69.1 per cent.

The Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB) said that this was down to a number of large concerts, events and conferences in the city. 

Average room rates in Glasgow increased by 15.4 per cent to £80.63 although a decline of -12.7 per cent in Aberdeen told what is now a familiar story for the city. Scotland’s highest average room rate was in Edinburgh at £112.62.

All eyes on Glasgow

Sean Morgan, managing director at LJ Research, said that Glasgow is back in the spotlight.

 “As we near the first anniversary of Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games, the spotlight is again on Scotland’s largest city. Significant conference activity combined with world renowned music and events have helped to generate remarkable growth for hoteliers in the city,” he said.

Scott Taylor, chief executive of GCMB, added: “Glasgow continues to be the go-to destination for major events and international conferences with substantial visitor and delegate footfall contributing to a tangible increase in our June figures compared to the same time last year.”

Bleak outlook for Aberdeen

Hotels in Aberdeen have seen a decline in business since the oil market in the city dropped, but Iain Watson, Chairman of the Aberdeen City and Shire Hotels’ Association, insists that it is all a matter of context.

“Room occupancy is falling and while we need to acknowledge that this as a serious issue, we do need to put it in context. For the past three years demand has been at an exceptional level: it would never have been possible to sustain that long-term and what we are now seeing is a return to the levels pre-2012,” he said.

“We also need to remember that the number of hotel bedrooms in Aberdeen has significantly increased and that the number of hotels being developed continues to grow. The increased number of bedrooms impacts on occupancy levels but, more importantly, this needs to be viewed positively as it now gives leisure and business travelers more choice.”

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