Almost 12 years ago, I was a portly high-school freshman known by most of my classmates simply as “that fat kid who wore an orange shirt to orientation.”
Please don’t pity me; I assure you the description was warranted. For one thing, I probably looked like the Great Pumpkin rolling through the halls with that ghastly orange T-shirt. For another, I didn’t make much of an effort to interact and change anyone’s perception. (I was rather introverted back then, more comfortable with a bag of Oreos than a group of peers.)
Fortunately for me, I befriended a more outgoing chum who appreciated my “quiet, jolly” ways. He persuaded me (with some persistence) to join the football team, and within a few months I had shed my baby fat—and adolescence fat, and teenage fat—and slimmed down to my more svelte, current frame.
The pace of progress doesn’t typically move in that direction. Usually things get bigger as they age.
The hotel industry, for example, has put on considerable girth since 2000. Total global hotel inventory has increased by more than 2,315,000 daily rooms (!!!) in 12 years, according to the Census database from STR Global. (If only Fat Pat had that many Oreos at his disposal during his lonely freshman year!)
That’s an incredible accomplishment for that industry—a testament to the drive and ambition (and greed, some might argue) of the investors and developers and franchisors within.
The world regions to see the most growth were Asia/Pacific (not surprising) and the Middle East/Africa, which had compound annual growth rates of 2.7% and 2.5%, respectively. The industry overall had a CAGR of 1.6%.
Some other highlights from STR Global’s report:
North America had the highest percentage of branded hotels rooms (66%).
The region also had the highest percentage of total global room stock at 41.4%. North America was followed by Europe (29.7%) and Asia/Pacific (21.6%).
Europe had a CAGR of 1.1% during the 12-year period, driven by growth in the upscale and upper-midscale segments.
Central/South America had the fewest number of branded rooms compared to the other regions.
It’s interesting to juxtapose the above findings with the current state of development. While construction is churning in many emerging markets, the industry in general has seen a significant slowdown bred of the global recession—a slowdown which many pundits predict will remain for the next few years.
Whether this will take a significant toll on the subsequent 12 years of hotel development is hard to say. I’m just praying my metabolism maintains its healthy pace.
Now on to the usual goodies …
Stat of the week
8.1%: China’s first-quarter economic growth, which is slower than expected. The country’s economy, which was flying at a clip north of 9%, has proven difficult for government officials to reign in; they’re trying to strategically hit a growth target of 7.5%.
Quote of the week I
“I have yet to talk to a hotelier who thinks this administration is good for this industry. Hoteliers are scared to death about Obamacare. This is a gateway industry with a lot of entry-level people, and if we have to insure them all overnight, it would be devastating.”
—Robert Habeeb, president and COO of First Hospitality Group, discussing the potential impact of the next U.S. presidential election, as reported in, “Debating US presidential election's impact.”
Quote of the week II
“Do you have a compelling reason for a consumer to download your app?”
—Paolo Torchio, VP of e-marketing and revenue consulting at Sabre Hospitality Solution during a mobile marketing webinar, as reported in “A guide to going mobile for hoteliers.”
So often we’re grasping frantically for the next best thing that we forget to ask basic questions about their implications on our business. Thanks for reminding us, Paolo.
Comment of the week
“#1 under ‘Criteria’ on the developer website: ‘A property must be located in a market that has a relationship with the great author and his literature or the lifestyle and opportunity for adventure that those locales suggest.’ Yikes...”
—Commenter “RE” responding to “Hemingway Hotels leader confident in new brand,” the recently re-announced hotel brand centered on the lifestyle of author Ernest Hemingway.
I agree, RE. It’s hard enough to get a new brand off the ground, let alone without somewhat arbitrary constraints on the potential development sites. However, it doesn’t hurt that those sites are somewhat solid targets for development anyway (e.g. Bahamas, Portugal, Spain). If nothing else, company President Tuckey Devlin’s got as much brass as the iconic author who inspired the brand.
Email Patrick Mayock or find him on Twitter.
The opinions expressed in this blog do not necessarily reflect the opinions of HotelNewsNow.com or its parent company, Smith Travel Research and its affiliated companies. Bloggers published on this site are given the freedom to express views that may be controversial, but our goal is to provoke thought and constructive discussion within our reader community. Please feel free to comment or contact an editor with any questions or concerns.