After terror attacks, recovery drives hotel investment in France

Melia Paris La Defense (Melia Paris La Defense)

France had 82.6 million international visitors in 2016—a decline of 2 percent from the previous year, but understandable in the wake of terror attacks. But the country's tourism-related industries seem to be on the mend. Overnight stays in Paris reached 2015's levels in the second quarter of 2017—up by 10.2 percent year-over-year and totaling 107.1 million nights. 

The numbers from hotel companies in France are also promising: Last year, Paris-based AccorHotels blamed the terror attacks for a revenue decline in the first quarter of 2016, but posted significantly stronger numbers back in Spring. Earlier this year, Colliers International named Paris  the leading hot spot for investors in Europe, with lower development costs than London helping to sharpen interest.

Meliá in France

This means that France is prime for more hotel development, and one Spanish hotel company is already boosting its presence. “We are very interested in growing our brand recognition in France to allow us to grow both inside and outside its borders,” Alfredo Aznar, regional director for Meliá Hotels International in France, said in a statement. 

Meliá is currently studying projects in several popular destinations, including Saint Tropez, Marseille and Bordeaux, in order to grow its brand footprint.

As Meliá noted in its financial report for the first half of the year, Paris has begun to show signs of recovery and confidence in 2017. Meliá only has six hotels in the country, with five in Paris (Meliá Champs Elysses, Meliá Vendome, Meliá Tour Eiffel, Meliá Notre Dame and TRYP Opera). The company opened the Meliá La Defense in early 2015.

Looking ahead, the company will bring its Innside by Meliá brand to the country with a hotel at the Charles de Gaulle airport in 2019.