African hotels see improvements, but mixed bag for Middle East

AC Hotel Cape Town Waterfront
The AC Hotel Cape Town Waterfront in South Africa marks the brand's debut in the Middle East and Africa region. Image: Marriott International

According to the latest data from STR, hotels in the Middle East reported mixed performance results in April, while hotels in Africa posted growth across the three key performance metrics.

Occupancy at hotels across the Middle East was up 4.1 percent to 74.6 percent year over year, but average daily rate dropped 7.1 percent to US$148.28. All told, revenue per available room declined. 3.3 percent to US$110.62. In Africa, however, occupancy was up 0.8 percent to 62.1 percent, ADR improved 8.1 percent to US$116.18 and RevPAR grew 9 percent to US$72.15.

Cape Town, South Africa

A year after the city was poised to run out of water, Cape Town's hotels are in good shape. Occupancy improved 8.5 percent to 62.2 percent year over year, ADR is up 8.2 percent to ZAR1,631.71 and RevPAR improved an impressive 17.3 percent to ZAR1,014.60.

STR analysts note that the strong increases were due to the year-over-year comparison with a weak April 2018, which was impacted by the water crisis in the country. Oxford Economics’ 2019 forecast for South Africa projects a 4.8 percent jump in overnight tourist arrivals to the country. However, the upcoming presidential elections may impact tourism arrivals in the short term, the analysts cautioned.

Amman, Jordan

Occupancy at Amman hotels was up +7.7 percent to 72.7 percent, ADR grew 1.2 percent to JOD100.21 and RevPAR improved 9.1 percent to JOD72.81.

The occupancy and RevPAR levels were the highest for an April in Amman since 2014, although STR's analysts credit large-scale events for the improvements. Demand (up 7.7 percent) was driven by the Amman Jazz Festival (April 19-23), the 11th Amman Contemporary Dance Festival (April 6-20) and the Brazilian Food Festival (April 24-27).