Rotorua hotels experienced an exceptional 2015 collectively recording their best occupancy level in five years according to new research by Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA).
Occupancy in TIA's 11 member hotels in Rotorua was 76.7%, up 5.6 points compared to 2014.
Of all TIA Hotel regions Rotorua recorded the highest occupancy growth increase in 2015.
TIA Hotel Sector Manager Sally Attfield said although this was below the average national occupancy rate it was the highest recorded in Rotorua for the last five years and shows an 11 point growth over this five year period.
The average daily rate (across all star grades) was $110, up $10 (10%) on 2014, generating total revenue of $70 million (up $10 million).
Rotorua's results were supported by events including the Rotorua Marathon, National Sevens, national conferences, TRENZ 2015, the inaugural Crankworx Rotorua mountain bike event, and the filming of a movie, Pete's Dragon.
Rotorua continued to be an attractive location for New Zealanders in the school holiday periods. Chinese New Year saw increased visitation to the region from the China market in what is already a busy time of the year.
• Tourists spend $1.5 billion in Bay
"Every region saw record results last year. Summer 2015/16 and the months of March, April and May 2016 have provided further increases in both occupancy and average rates," said Ms Attfield.
"The increased revenue performances are allowing for reinvestment in both properties and people. We are also seeing investors responding to demand with more hotel developments around the country than we have seen for quite some time."
TIA Hotels 2015 Annual Operating Survey shows that Rotorua's 11 TIA Hotel members:
Offered 1482 rooms (up 36 rooms from 2014)
Employed 882 people (up over 150 people from 2014)
Contributed nearly $50 million (up $6 million on 2014) to the region through wages and salaries ($21 million), food and beverage purchases, council rates (over $1 million) and other expenditure
Recorded growth in the Australian, Japanese and China markets (the latter is up 7 points) but declines in visitor numbers from New Zealand, South Korea and Japan. All other markets were steady.
Experienced a small decline in the corporate travel market and a 5 point drop in independent leisure travellers, based on market share percentages, offset by an increase in tours and groups.
Other highlights from the TIA Hotels Annual Operating Survey 2015:
The national annual occupancy rate was 78.8%, up 3.1 points on 2014, and the highest in the last five years. Auckland achieved the highest annual occupancy rate of 84%, followed by Queenstown (78.6%) and Wellington (77.9%).
The national average daily rate across all star grades was $157, up $12 on 2014, and the highest in the last five years. Queenstown has the highest average rate of $166 followed by Auckland and the Central Park region (Taupo, Tongariro, Napier and Gisborne) on $164.
Total room capacity was static at 17,900, with increases in Christchurch offset by the temporary closure of an Auckland property for refurbishment.
TIA hotel members generated $1.17 billion in revenue, up from $1.05 billion on 2014. They contributed $815 million (up $41 million) to the economy through wages and salaries (more than $360 million), food and beverage purchases, council rates (over $19 million) and other expenditure.
TIA hotels employ 10,800 staff nationally, up from 10,500 in 2014.
TIA Hotel Sector
TIA's hotel sector represents the interests of almost 140 members throughout New Zealand, including international chain, large independent and privately owned hotels. TIA hotel sector members employ 10,800 staff nationally, with annual revenues of more than $1.17 billion.
TIA's hotel members contribute to a monthly performance survey conducted by The Fresh Information Company.