The Real MVPs – Markets That Outperformed in 2020

When COVID-19 hit the States and stay-at-home orders swept across the nation, it is no wonder that the hotel industry took a steep dive. While 2020 started out as just another year, April soon became the worst month in history for U.S. hotels. Occupancy fell to 24.4% when a year earlier it was reaching roughly 68%. Average Daily Rate (ADR) dropped to $73.18, which paired with the low occupancy, resulted in a Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) level of just $17.85. 

Luckily for our State, we have phenomenal pro-social distancing outdoor destinations such as beaches and hiking trails. In June, occupancy charts showed five of the top six markets were beach destinations. In July and August, Colorado Springs held first and second place, respectively, among all markets in the metric. In September, California markets reigned due to housing of displaced residents from the western wildfires. 

It should come as no surprise that these drive-to markets, along with the California markets, were the standouts when looking at the full year. 

2020 occupancy leaders among Smith Travel Research (STR)-defined markets:

  1. Florida Keys (58.5%)
  2. McAllen/Brownsville, TX (58.2%)
  3. California North Central (57.0%)
  4. California South/Central (55.0%)
  5. Riverside & San Bernardino, CA (54.5%) 

The following markets saw just a 10-point occupancy difference or less from 2019: 

  1. Louisiana South
  • 2020: 50.4% 
  • 2019: 54.1% 
  1. Texas East
  • 2020: 49.5% 
  • 2019: 56.9% 
  1. McAllen/Brownsville, TX
  • 2020: 58.2% 
  • 2019: 66.1% 
  1. Augusta, GA-SC
  • 2020: 49.4% 
  • 2019: 58.5% 
  1. Georgia North
  • 2020: 46.6% 
  • 2019: 56.2% 
  1. Texas North
  • 2020: 50.0% 
  • 2019: 59.7% 

Not only did Tampa Bay bring home the Stanley Cup AND the Superbowl Championship, but the Tampa/St. Petersburg area saw the highest occupancy among the Top 25 Markets at 50.8%, which ranked 15th among all U.S. markets. Phoenix was the next highest market, ranking 22nd at 49.8%. 

While there were no markets that made it past the 60% occupancy rate in 2020, it is impressive to see which locations came in among top occupancy for the year. It’s also noteworthy to look at markets that were able to perform close to their pre-pandemic numbers, that’s an MVP accomplishment if you ask us! 

Gulati Law is here to assist Florida Hoteliers with any questions they may have. Call us at (407) 900-5054 today! 

Source: STR 

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