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Manchester's Hotels Are Thriving

Occupancy rates up to pre-recession figures

Written by . Published on January 23rd 2014.

Manchester's Hotels Are Thriving

ANNUAL hotel occupancy data for 2013 – supplied by STR Global Ltd and released today by Visit Manchester - confirms that Manchester city centre has achieved its strongest year of trading since records began. 

To match 2006 occupancy levels is a fantastic achievement, but it is particularly satisfying given that we now have an extra 2,870 rooms to fill in the city centre. 

With an annual occupancy rate of 77% for the city centre, 2013 has matched the previously highest annual rate, attained in 2006. The figure is especially positive because in the period between 2006 and 2013 there has been a 58% increase in the number of rooms to fill in the city centre – up from 4,990 in 2006 to 7,860 in 2013. 

The annual success story follows a series of high points achieved throughout 2013. 

These included the highest rates for February since records began with a monthly city centre average of 79% assisted by various sporting and music events as well as national exhibitions such as the UK Holidays at Home and Bike & Triathlon Show. 

A record August - traditionally a quiet month for Manchester hotels - where the monthly city centre average rate was recorded as 77%, up from 66% in August 2012. The Ashes, Manchester Pride and Dig The City all contributed, whilst major international conferences such as the International Congress of Anthropological & Ethnological Sciences, CASE Europe Annual Conference and the European University Debating Championships all took place that month, attracting 3,200 delegates between them. 

Two major achievements in November, with the highest ever recorded city centre weekend rate at 93% and one of the highest overall month averages for the city centre at 87% - a rate achieved only once before, in November 2006. The Rugby League World Cup final and Manchester Christmas Markets assisted with the results. 

The annual occupancy rate across Greater Manchester for 2013 has been recorded as 76%.

Paul Simpson, managing director of Visit Manchester, said: “It’s been quite a year for Manchester ’s hotel industry with multiple records broken throughout 2013. To match 2006 occupancy levels is a fantastic achievement, but it is particularly satisfying given that we now have an extra 2,870 rooms to fill in the city centre. 

“This 58% increase in the number of rooms available means that in 2013 our hotels were required to fill significantly more rooms to achieve 77% occupancy than in 2006. Of course, this speaks volumes about the current strength of Manchester ’s tourism industry and how its diversity has continued to attract overnight visitors. 

“With Manchester recently being named as one of the top spots outside of London for new hotel rooms over the next three years – with over 1,500 expected in the city centre alone by 2016 – we’re looking forward to further growth of the sector in line with the objectives set out in the recently launched Greater Manchester Strategy for the Visitor Economy 2014 – 2020.” 

Hotel occupancy in Greater Manchester is measured through the hotels subscribed to the STR Global occupancy tool. 

The city centre is defined as per Visit Manchester’s city centre map.

The Greater Manchester Strategy for the Visitor Economy 2014 – 2020 can be viewed online here.

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