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Thailand hotel sector surges in 2012

Thailand’s hotel sector experienced a surge in performance in 2012, as record tourist arrivals helped the country recover from the floods of 2011.

According to the latest data from STR Global, Thailand’s revenue per available room (revPAR) increased 15.4% in 2012 to THB2,232 (US$75) last year. This was mainly driven by returning occupancy levels, which increased 10.0% to 69.2%, but average daily rate (ADR) also recovered, climbing 4.9% to THB3,226.

RevPAR growth was seen across the country, but Koh Samui registered the most impressive gains. The island’s revPAR jumped 29.4% to THB4,224, driven by a 27.1% surge in occupancy and the highest ADR of any Thai destination (THB6,910).

After Koh Samui, Chiang Mai exhibited the second strongest revPAR growth (+19.3% to THB1,721), driven by a 13.4% rise in occupancy. The twin resort areas of Hua Hin and Cha-Am were only market to experience a decline in ADR (-2.2%), but rising occupancy levels ensured that revPAR increased 5.0% compared to 2011.

“Tourism in places like Chiang Mai… is not as popular of a location as Bangkok and other sought-after beach destinations,” explained Elizabeth Randall Winkle, managing director of STR Global. “However, despite Chiang Mai having the lowest ADR (THB2,825) of the key cities, it showed growth in all three performance metrics, illustrating promising demand for this market and type of destination.”

The improvement in Thailand’s occupancy and ADR can despite a sharp rise in the amount of hotel room supply in the country. Bangkok saw an extra 4.3% of supply, with 2,993 rooms being added in 2012, but a 16.0% rise in international visitor arrivals, to 22.3 million, helped fill the extra beds. Thailand is now targeting 24.5m visitors in 2013.


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