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Heathrow hotel bookings down despite 'record' February

Hotstats finds conferences down 3 per cent in airport hub, while Glasgow hotels return to Commonwealth Games levels

Pictured: the new Hyatt Place London Heathrow Hotel, which rebranded from Heathrow Hotel Bath Road

Conference bookings and overnight stays at Heathrow hotels were down by up to 3 per cent in February, despite the airport reporting its "best ever" February.

Hotstats' UK Chain Hotels Market Review found conference revenue slipped 3 per cent, while occupancy was down 2 per cent year on year. It came despite the airport boasting of a record February in 2017, which saw 5.27 million passengers pass through.

Average room rates (ARR) for Heathrow hotels went up slightly, from £74 in February 2016 to £75 this year. Hotel developments in the area include the rebranding of Heathrow Hotel Bath Road this year, which is now the second Hyatt property at Heathrow, the Hyatt Place London Heathrow Airport.

Meanwhile, Hotstats found that Glasgow hotels have returned to occupancy and price levels that were seen during the hosting of the Commonwealth Games.

ARR went up 3 per cent year on year to £76 (up from £74 in February 2016), while occupancy rose 4 per cent to an average of 77 per cent.

The authors noted: "Following two years of profit decline, hotels in Glasgow are bouncing back towards the premium performance achieved in 2014 when the city hosted the Commonwealth Games.

"The hotel market in Glasgow has struggled to absorb the 880 bedrooms of supply which have entered the market since 2014. And with 73 per cent of additions operating in the budget segment, there has been significant downward pressure on rate."

Hotels in the West Midlands benefited from 5 per cent more conference bookings and a 3 percentage point rise in occupancy (74 per cent) in the month of February, yet ARR rose just £0.20 year on year, at £78.

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