Accor Sees Full Recovery on Room Rates Now, Hotel Bookings by Year-End

Skift grip

Accor is like an industry barometer, given its 5,304 hotels spread across the globe and across all service types. Its figures suggest that the sector is broadly on track to recover by the end of the year, with a few exceptions such as China.

Sean O’Neill

Accor, the Paris-based hotel operator with 5,304 hotels worldwide, said on Thursday it expected booking demand to return to pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year. . Room prices over the past four months have already exceeded 2019 levels outside of Asia-Pacific.

“Today we have an average room price that is higher than the level of the first quarter of 2019 on a like-for-like basis,” said CEO Sébastien Bazin.

The strength in hotel prices is supported by pent-up demand, particularly for luxury and boutique properties. Travelers are also making more advance reservations, giving the group visibility into supply and demand trends for more optimal pricing, executives said.

The group – whose brands include Sofitel, Pullman and Ibis – reported an increase in the number of people moving around the country for leisure and business. Business trips represent on average 60% of its clientele. While the group has also seen international travel increase, it said China’s pandemic travel restrictions have dampened a global recovery in international bookings.

High pricing has allowed Accor to manage inflation without concern.

“There is inflation in this world, as we all know,” Bazin said. “But we’re in a business where you can pass it on to business or leisure individuals.”

In the first quarter, the group generated 737.1 million dollars (701 million euros) in turnover. This was up 85% year over year, but still 23% less than the comparable period in 2019.

Revenue per available room and occupancy rates, two key industry metrics, improved but remained below 2019 levels. Revenue per available room more than doubled year-over-year but were remained down a quarter from their pre-pandemic highs.

The group said it had benefited from some operational efficiencies mainly through the integration of the companies that make up the recently acquired Ennismore group. The war in Ukraine has had no significant impact, leaders said.

Today, the group’s room count stands at 212,000 rooms, more or less at the level of the end of last year. During the first quarter, the group opened 22 hotels. It plans to grow its network of properties by 3.5% during the financial year.

For context, see the full video: Accor CEO at Skift Forum Europe 2022.