Events impact September hotel performance in Scotland

By Liam Garrahan contact

- Last updated on GMT

Aberdeen saw its first rise in hotel prices in eight months. Image credit: Thinkstock/Colin_Hunter
Aberdeen saw its first rise in hotel prices in eight months. Image credit: Thinkstock/Colin_Hunter

Related tags: Scotland

Hotels in Scotland’s three largest cities have felt the impact from events, according to the monthly LJ Forecaster Scottish Intercity Report.

Hotels in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow saw varying results in September due to the number of events being staged in the cities.

Aberdeen, which has struggled since the decline of the oil industry in the city, hit occupancy figures of 90 per cent during the week of the 2015 SPE Offshore Europe Conference and Exhibition, while mid-week occupancy figures peaked at 99 per cent during the event. Despite this, overall year-on-year room occupancy fell by 12.8 per cent to 75 per cent.

The Granite City saw its first rise in hotel prices in eight months with a recorded increase of 5.4 per cent, generating an ARR of £104.72. Room prices peaked at £223.70 during the conference. Overall RevPAR fell for the 10th​ consecutive month by 8.1 per cent to £78.51.

Edinburgh saw a year-on-year decline in performance as 2014 brought with it the historic Ryder Cup golf tournament to the near-by Gleneagles as well as the Scottish Referendum outcome. The lack of big events saw ARR drop 12.4 per cent to £111.53, marking the Scottish capital’s first double-digit loss of the decade. RevPAR also suffered a double-digit plunge of 14.1 per cent year-on-year with a rate of £102.38.

Although occupancy dropped by 1.9 per cent, it remained the highest in the country at 91.8 per cent with 23 nights where 90 per cent occupancy levels or above were reached.

Glasgow was the only city to see an increase in rooms sold (0.5 per cent), helping it achieve its fourth-consecutive month of occupancy growth, hitting 91.5 per cent.

Glasgow’s sporting events, concerts and business conferences contributed to 24 nights where 90 per cent occupancy levels were achieved, with 14 of those above 95 per cent.

Sean Morgan, managing director at LJ Research, ​said: “A Ryder Cup hangover affected hotel performance in the central belt last month and, in particular, in Edinburgh where an unprecedented double digit decline in rate was observed.

“Less influenced by the stalling demand this month, Glasgow hotels continue to post strong growth compared to 2013. Meanwhile, as has characterised performance so far in 2015, Aberdeen hotels continue to suffer from weak global oil demand. Following recent news of slowing growth in the Chinese economy, it’s unlikely that the downward pressure on the oil industry will abate any time soon.”

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