Belfast Telegraph

Hotels in Republic of Ireland performing well as peak period begins

The new Maldron Hotel at Brunswick Street in Belfast
The new Maldron Hotel at Brunswick Street in Belfast

By John Mulligan

Hotels in the Republic have performed strongly as summer begins, with revenue per available room jumping 13.6% in Dublin and by 18.3% elsewhere during May.

Davy Stockbrokers said the performance continues the year-to-date trend of strong growth in both areas.

And it said it's forecasting growth in revenue per available room of 5.5% in Dublin for Dalata, Ireland's biggest hotel group.

Dalata recently opened its fourth hotel in Northern Ireland, a Maldron in Belfast's Brunswick Square.

And in nearby Bedford Street Hastings Hotels has unveiled its Grand Central Hotel.

Davy said: "As we enter the key summer months, average daily rate will remain central to growth as occupancy level comparatives are very full."

It added that Dalata is likely to continue to outperform in the UK market.

Stock market-listed Dalata saw its revenue jump 20% to €348.5m last year, while its pre-tax profit rose 75% to €77.3m. It has a market capitalisation of €1.2bn.

The group has a portfolio of 38 hotels, with a total of 7,600 bedrooms. It is developing an additional 2,234 rooms.

The May data from travel research company STR follows figures for April that showed total revenue per available room in Ireland rising 9.7% year-on-year.

The STR figures show that during May, occupancy of hotels in Dublin was one percentage point higher, while the average daily rate soared 12.3%, compared to a 6.6% rise in April. In the year to date, revenue per available room in Dublin is 8.9% higher.

In regional Ireland, revenue per available room rose 18.3% last month, with occupancy up 4.1 percentage points. The average daily room rate in that area was up 12.3% year-on-year during May.

While the performance will be welcomed by the sector, it may also have a sting in the tail.

Hoteliers have successfully lobbied for a number of years to have a special 9% VAT rate for the sector retained. It was introduced in 2011 as a special measure to help a number of businesses in the services sector, including hotels, restaurants and hairdressers.

There has also been a campaign for a similar reduction in the VAT rate here.

Belfast Telegraph