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Hotel occupancies rebound with 6.5 ppt increase to 65.3% for H2 2021

Thanks to the 172.4% increase in visitor arrivals following the VTL scheme.

The hotel industry began its road to recovery with a 65.3% occupancy rate—a 6.5 percentage points increase in the second quarter of 2021. 

According to CBRE’s latest report, this was mainly due to a 172.4% or 211,306 year-on-year increase in visitor arrivals in the same period. Since its launch last September, the Vaccinated Travel Lane scheme is open to 32 markets, with the program also adding to the easing of border restrictions. 

Bookings from foreign workers undergoing quarantine also added to the increased rate. 

The Singapore Tourism Board's (STB) efforts to inject demand into the domestic and overseas demand and the continued re-opening of the meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE) industry also paid off.

The SingapoRediscover Voucher (SRV) scheme—a $100 worth of vouchers were distributed to Singaporean citizens—also boosted the local tourism with over $300m in SRV transactions recorded for the year.

For the foreign market, several marketing partnerships were announced by STB. These include a $4.5b expansion in the second quarter of 2022 for Resorts World Sentosa and a contract to host the Formula One Singapore Grand Prix for an additional seven years. 

Critical to the performance was the continued re-opening of the MICE industry, which saw the Safe Business Events Framework being announced in 2020. More than 200 MICE events were held in the previous year, with an estimated 50,000 guests attending. 

Events for the incoming year include the Singapore International Water Week, the 2022 Global Health Security Conference, and the World Cities Summit.

Rooms Revenue per available room (RevPAR) for the same period also saw a 35% increase to $111.4, with the average daily rate also jumping up by 23.8% to $168.1.

When broken down, luxury hotels had the highest increases in RevPAR, with economy-based hotels posting the weakest performance.  

“Although these are encouraging signs of recovery, the revival is still only in its early stages, with 2021’s RevPAR approximately 59.8% below 2019’s figure,” commented CBRE.

The research also points to the continued expansion of the VTL scheme as the way forward, with Australia poised to open its borders in early 2022. 

The year 2021 also saw a few hotels open their doors, putting Lion City’s total hotel room supply at around 69,590 rooms. These included The Clan Hotel at Far East Square and Oasia Resort Sentosa, with 324 and 191 rooms, respectively. On the other hand, the same year saw the closure of Grand Park Orchard, which is set to reopen later this year under a rebranding into Pullman Orchard.

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