Thursday, January 25, 2001
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Posted on: Thursday, January 25, 2001

Isle hotel occupancy highest in decade

By John Duchemin
Advertiser Staff Writer

A survey of Hawaii hotels says occupancy and room rates hit decade highs last year, but less spectacular results are predicted this year because of economic concerns.

Hotels last year set 10-year highs for average occupancy rates and daily room rates, according to the survey by tourism consulting firm PKF Hawaii.

PKF said average statewide hotel occupancy rose to 77.9 percent in 2000, up from 72.9 percent in 1999. Average room rates statewide rose to a record $151.79, up from $144.53 in 1999. Revenue per available room rose to $118.25, up from $105.35 in 1999.

Each of those numbers was the highest in the past 11 years, according to PKF. Numbers before 1990 were not immediately available. PKF’s private survey covers 57 percent of the state’s available hotel rooms. Its results can vary from official state numbers, which should be released later this month.

The increases were powered by an influx of travelers from the Mainland, higher-spending tourists and greater use of Hawaii for corporate meetings, said Joseph Toy, president of consulting firm Hospitality Advisors L.L.C.

This year, however, growth could slacken if the Mainland economy slows and Japan’s economy stays soft.

Toy predicted that the first quarter of 2001 will be strong, but said signs already point to weakness the rest of the year.

"The booking pace for this summer has already slowed and is looking soft, and we’ve started to see some group cancellations," he said. "It’s nothing to panic about, but there is cause for concern."

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