Abu Dhabi hotel guests stay rises 29pc
Abu Dhabi, February 28, 2012
The number of hotel guests staying in Abu Dhabi’s 127 hotels, hotel apartments and resorts rose by 29 per cent in January compared to the same month last year, according to the latest figures released by the Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority.
Last month some 198,139 guests stayed in Abu Dhabi with the number of guest nights also rising, this time by 20 per cent to 571,672, said a statement.
“The strong increase in guest arrivals and guest nights appears to have been significantly influenced by January’s dynamic events calendar, which included the hosting of the Volvo Ocean Race and the fortnight of activities staged to coincide with it, the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship and the World Future Energy Summit, which attracted some 650 exhibiting companies to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre,” said Mubarak Al Muhairi, director general, Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority.
“Stays are also likely to have benefited from increased air access to the destination brought about by Etihad Airway’s recent launch of its four-times-a-week service from Chengdu, China and Dusseldorf, Germany and the start of Air Berlin’s four weekly flights from its home base,” he said.
Combined revenue for Abu Dhabi’s hotels rose 11 per cent last month compared to January 2011 to Dh408 million ($111 million).
Food and beverage revenue rose 18 per cent during the same period to Dh155.3 million ($42.3 million), the statement said.
Hotel occupancy stabilised at 66 per cent - the same rate as January 2010 - although average length of stay was down slightly by 7 per cent to 2.89 days and the average room rate dropped by 6 per cent on comparative months to now stand at Dh503 million ($137 million).
“This is all promising news on which to start the year given that the past 12 months has seen considerable additions to the destination hotel room inventory. Competition has heightened, yet new beachfront and golf course fronting properties are significantly enhancing our leisure appeal,” said Al Muhairi.
“We also anticipate good results for February with the recent World Ophthalmology Congress having delivered significant bookings for the hospitality sector,” he added.
Domestic tourism accounted for 18 per cent of January’s hotel guest tally with the GCC producing the strongest regional increase of 120 per cent in arrivals, primarily driven by a 218 per cent rise in guests from Saudi Arabia who totaled 8,574 in all, accounting for 18,415 guest nights – a 22 per cent rise on January last year. This led to the Kingdom now being ranked fourth in Abu Dhabi’s international guest ranking.
Other GCC countries also proved good source markets for Abu Dhabi with guest arrivals from Qatar rising 69 per cent to 2,022 last month compared to January 2010, those from Kuwait increasing 65 per cent to 1,541.
Guest arrival from Oman climbed 57 per cent to 2,699 while those from Bahrain were up 45 per cent to 812, the statement said.
India sustained its ranking as the destination’s second largest international source market, after the UK, with a 45 per cent rise in hotel guests to 10,924 delivering 37,559 guest nights, which was up 17 per cent month-on-month, it said.
“We are hopeful of further improving on arrivals from India having recently hosted a major inbound familiarisation trip for a delegation from the Travel Agents Association of India, staged a five-city road show throughout the republic and completed a highly successful showing at the SATTE travel fair in New Delhi,” Al Muhairi said.
European guests increased 30 per cent last month on January 2010 with Germany turning in a strong 64 per cent increase to 9,204 to make the country Abu Dhabi’s third largest international source market.
The UK, produced a 15 per cent increase to 13,005, France accounted for a 22 per cent rise to 4,004, while Italy turned in a 20 per cent surge to 3,556 while The Netherlands climbed 47 per cent to 1,532, the statement said.
China also returned a stellar increase in hotel guests for Abu Dhabi – rising 235 per cent in January compared to the same month last year to deliver 4,407 arrivals, 7,339 guest nights, and taking the country to eighth in the emirate’s guest rankings, it said.
“Prospects from China should increase further with the impending March 1 launch, by Etihad Airways of a daily non-stop service from Shanghai to Abu Dhabi International,” Al Muhairi concluded. – TradeArabia News Service