Europe's hotels see strong performance boost in 2017

Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam, Netherlands. Photo Credit: Hilton Worldwide. (European hotel industry performance surged, most notably in its key markets the UK, Spain and the Netherlands. )

STR reported that Europe’s hotel industry saw a significant boost across all key performance metrics during 2017. Occupancy rose 2.4 percent to 71.9 percent, driving a 3.1-percent increase in ADR to €110.51 and a 5.6-percent increase in RevPAR to €79.46.


STR analysts stated that occupancy levels reached an all-time high in the Netherlands, rising 3.4 percent to 74.3 percent last year. This rise in occupancy led ADR to increase 5.3 percent to €117.93 and RevPAR to increase 9.4 percent to €87.57. The country’s key market, Amsterdam, led the region to success with a 4.1-increase in occupancy to 81.5 percent, and a 6.0-percent increase in ADR to €143.91.

Two events boosted Amsterdam’s performance in September. The IBC entertainment and technology conference, which drew a record crowd, allowed average occupancy to rise more than 90 percent while rate increases ranged between 41 percent and 67 percent over a five-day period. Also, the European Photovoltaic Solar Energy and Exhibition also drove occupancy increases above 90 percent on four consecutive nights in late September. 


Spain’s occupancy and rate levels reached well above the country’s long-term averages last year. Occupancy grew 0.7 percent to 74.6 percent despite Barcelona’s relatively low total-year occupancy, which dropped 0.1 percent to 76.7 percent. ADR rose 8.0 percent to €114.41 as RevPAR grew 8.8 percent to €85.29 in response. 

Barcelona’s YOY RevPAR dropped for three straight months after the Catalan Independence Referendum. Performance growth was strong in early 2017 due in part to several events, including the Barcelona International Comics Fair in April, European Society of Cardiology Congress in August, International Epilepsy Congress in September and the Congress for European Society of Organ Transplantation, also in September. The United European Gastroenterology Week from October to November helped boost levels in the market once unrest began during the referendum.

United Kingdom

STR reported in August the UK market saw strong year-end performance levels thanks to a record-breaking first half of 2017. The British pound dropped significantly against the dollar and euro after the June 2016 referendum results to leave the European Union came in. The drop was initially a positive for UK hotel groups as the favorable exchange rate drew in a surplus of international travelers. It also drove domestic tourism to surge, as traveling to other countries became less affordable for UK residents. 

However, STR analysts noted “the Brexit effect” seems to be waning as performance in the final months of 2017 dropped in response to the rebounding pound. Occupancy levels declined slightly for seven consecutive months to end the year—0.5 percent to 77.4 percent—while ADR grew YOY each month in 2017 rising 3.6 percent to £92.32. Meanwhile, RevPAR rose 4.1 percent to £71.49 in response. 

The capital’s hotels saw a 4.1-percent ADR growth in 2017 as continuously strong supply growth overshadowed a relatively low occupancy rate. London’s hotel market also remained strong despite the multiple terror attacks in 2017, which made a minimal impact on overall hotel performance.