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The Women’s World Cup Hotel Booking Bounce

Alan Woinski

August 16th, 2023

Skift Take

  • Australia and New Zealand hotels saw revenue rise during FIFA Women’s World Cup, especially in Wellington and Auckland.
  • Singapore Expands Hotel Hiring: Singapore permits hiring from six new countries to meet growing hotel sector demands.
  • Macau’s tourism recovers with high visitor counts and new hotel offerings, including Raffles Hotel.

STR said the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 had given hotels around Australia and New Zealand a performance boost during the usually quiet winter season. Nine hotel markets/submarkets between Australia and New Zealand hosted matches during the tournament. All but one of those experienced a noticeable jump in RevPAR when comparing group stage dates from July 20 to August 2 against the 19 days leading into the event. Smaller markets, especially in New Zealand, have seen an even stronger overall benefit. Wellington hosted the most group-stage matches and saw the largest RevPAR premium of 42% in the first 14 days of the tournament. Auckland saw a 32% RevPAR gain while hosting six matches and the opening ceremony. ADR drove Wellington’s RevPAR premium, while Auckland was split with equal contributions from occupancy and rate. In Australia, Brisbane picked up the biggest impact during group play, especially on July 22, with the England/Haiti match driving 90% occupancy and an ADR of A$306. Australia and Niger six days later drove occupancy to 91% but lower ADR of A$270. Perth was the only area to see lower group-stage RevPAR compared to the event leadup. STR said Forward STAR had shown a significant lift in occupancy on the books for the semifinals and finals this week.

Hotel operators in Singapore are set to face a boost in employment after the Ministry of Manpower authorized the hiring of housekeepers and porters from six new countries – the Philippines, Thailand, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka. Starting September 1, employers will be able to hire employees from the NTS countries for specific roles, something being welcomed by the hotel industry, particularly with such a strong pipeline of new hotels under development.

With all the concern about China and its consumers, Macau welcomed 139,000 visitor arrivals on Saturday, the highest daily count since Covid hit. The average from January to July was 68,000 per day, 63% of 2019 levels. The average hotel occupancy rate in the first 7 months of 2023 was 83%, just 7.8 percentage points lower than the same period in 2019, and the city has more hotel rooms now. Between August 4 and August 10, the average hotel occupancy rate exceeded 94%.

Galaxy Entertainment Group initiated the soft opening of its new Raffles Hotel in Cotai. The all-suite hotel is a partnership between Galaxy and Accor’s Raffles Hotels & Resorts. The hotel has 450 suites. The grand opening celebration that will include the addition of the remaining restaurants, bar, and spa is expected towards the end of the year. The hotel is part of the new phase of development, which includes other non-casino gaming offerings, such as the Galaxy International Convention Center and Galaxy Arena, which opened in April. Galaxy is also planning to open its new Andaz Hotel on September 15 of this year.

The W Macau hotel tower, in Phase 2 of the Studio City casino resort on Cotai, has been approved for operation. Melco Resorts & Entertainment previously said the W Macau would open in September and add 560 rooms, but a precise opening date has not yet been given.

JLL said that after about an eight-year renovation project, the refurbished Grande Hotel Macau on Avenida de Almeida Ribeiro was unveiled. The renovation of the landmark boutique hotel started in April 2017. The renovated property has been vacant since 1996 and consists of 96 guestrooms, with its interior retaining its original features.

The Stankevicius Group, a consulting firm, has expressed interest in purchasing the Hotel 13 building in Macau. As to why they believe they can do what others before them have not, all we know is that they are looking to enter the global real estate market, focusing on hotel, commercial, and high-end penthouse residency developments. They previously expressed an interest in a tower development in Dubai.

The Sunshine Coast Council in Australia has given the final development approvals for the Avani Hotel construction. The new 13-story hotel is expected to begin construction in September. The $250 million, 4.5-star property will be on the corner of Brisbane Road and First Avenue in Mooloolaba. The hotel is expected to include a rooftop bar, pool, restaurant, and a conference and wedding venue. There will be 180 hotel rooms.

Mandarin Oriental, Singapore, and Mandala Club, a private members’ club with its flagship in Bukit Pasoh, Singapore, are partnering to provide an immersive experience into the vibrant culture of Singapore. The collaboration, the first of its kind in Asia, will bring together the luxury hospitality of Mandarin Oriental, Singapore, and Mandala Club’s network of Singapore’s influential business leaders, entrepreneurs, creative minds, and style icons. Mandarin Oriental guests will find their Marina Bay View Room and Suite bookings now include privileged access to Mandala Club in Bukit Pasoh. Mandala Club members can enjoy exclusive access to HAUS 65, a reimagined space on the 21st floor of the Mandarin Oriental, Singapore. Members can also enjoy the hotel’s swimming pool, spa, and wellness facilities, as well as preferential rates for dining and room stays.

While not getting the response from the investment community they initially expected, ITC Ltd is moving forward with demerging its hotel business. ITC shareholders will receive one share in the demerged hotel business for every 10 shares they hold in the parent company. The board approved the share entitlement ratio for the spinoff and proposal of the company’s demerger on Monday. It is expected to take 15 months to complete the whole process.

Lanson Place Mall of Asia will offer 389 units designed for both long and short stays and a range of dining outlets when it opens soon. The Manila, Philippines-property will have 247 hotel rooms, 142 serviced residences, and amenities such as a fitness center and rooftop infinity pool. Cyan Modern Kitchen will be the signature restaurant. No complete hotel opening date has been announced, but introductory offers for stays are available beginning October 2.

Alan Woinski

August 16th, 2023

Companies: Accor, Avani Hotels & Resorts, Galaxy Entertainment Group, ITC Hotels, JLL, Mandala Hospitality Group, Mandarin Oriental, Marriott International, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, Minor Hotels, Raffles, W Hotels

Locations: Auckland, Australia, Brisbane, Cotai, Macau, Manila, New Zealand, Perth, Singapore, Sydney

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