The downturn happens even in paradise
The global economic downturn negatively impacted the luxury island destinations of Mauritius and the Maldives, according to STR Global, the leading provider of market information to the world’s hotel industry. Both destinations experienced occupancy drops for the first four months of the year, as their main European source markets were hit by recession, falling employment and declining consumer confidence.
Mauritius and the Maldives are renowned for their upscale to luxury image, which is well-represented in their hotel offering. STR Global tracks the performance of 23 hotels in Mauritius and 17 hotels in the Maldives.
Whilst occupancy levels declined, average room rates increased slightly when measured in local currency. Mauritius’s occupancy fell 16 percentage points to 62.5 percent, compared to the Maldives’ 15.1-percentage points decline to 70.5 percent for January through April 2009. Average room rates grew 2.8 percent and 6.9 percent in Mauritius and Maldives, respectively. Unfortunately, the rate increases could not hold up the revenue per available room performances, which declined 18 percent in Mauritius and 12 percent in the Maldives.
Comparing the ADR results in euro terms, the currency used by the majority of visitors to both islands, a different picture emerges. Maldives took the top spot with an increase of 26 percent to 704, compared to Mauritius’s 3-percent decrease to 184 for the first four months of this year. The currency fluctuation and weakening Euro against the Maldivian-Rufiyaas made Maldives more expensive to its European clientele. As can be seen on the graphs below, the Maldives have an ADR premium of 520 over Mauritius for year-to-April 2009 compared to the same period last year.
Source: STR Global
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For more than 20 years, Smith Travel Research has been the recognized leader for lodging industry benchmarking and research. Smith Travel Research and STR Global offer monthly, weekly, and daily STAR benchmarking reports to more than 36,000 hotel clients, representing nearly 5 million rooms worldwide. STR is headquartered in Hendersonville, Tenn., and STR Global is based in London. For more information, visit www.smithtravelresearch.com or www.strglobal.com.