Victorian hotel performance road to recovery; Accor calls for investing in events to accelerate the recovery of tourism

Accor, Australia’s largest hotel operator, has seen occupancy growth across its network of 66 hotels (10,200 rooms) in Victoria, but its urban and suburban properties are still impacted by the late resumption of business travel and meetings.

The group’s Victorian hotels recorded an average occupancy rate of 60% from January to the end of April 2022, with Victorian areas, such as Geelong and Daylesford, enjoying strong support from holidaymakers, with properties such as Novotel Geelong ahead of pre-pandemic levels.

By contrast, the slow return of workers to Melbourne’s CBD has limited occupancy rates at most hotels in the city, with the exception of the recent Grand Prix weekend, which saw most Accor hotels operate at 89% occupancy.

A recent analysis by the Property Council of Australia found that while Melbourne CBD office occupancy doubled in the March quarter, it was still only tracking 32% capacity, compared to 41% in Sydney, 48% in Brisbane and 61% in Adelaide.

With the opening of interstate and international borders, Accor anticipates a strong performance for the five new additions it added to its Victorian network in 2021: Mantra Traralgon, Mercure Melbourne Doncaster, Peppers Marysville, The Sebel Melbourne Ringwood and Mövenpick Hotel Melbourne Spencer Street, the first Mövenpick-branded property in Victoria.

Accor will add the 275-room Mercure Melbourne South Bank to its collection in the second half of 2022, following the recent agreement with Salter Brothers for Accor to manage 10 properties currently under the Travelodge brand.

In the pipeline, Accor also plans to add new hotels in Richmond, Hawthorn, Malvern and Latrobe, as well as Novotel and ibis Styles hotels at Melbourne Airport, 25hours Melbourne and SO/Melbourne.

Accor Pacific General Manager Sarah Derry said: “Between 2021 and 2025, we are opening fourteen hotels in Victoria, representing an investment of over $700 million by various owners. This will create approximately 600 jobs, while strengthening the city’s attractiveness and the quality of available housing.

Ms Derry said CBD hotels’ performance at events such as Formula 1 races and the Melbourne Comedy Festival had been encouraging.

“When cities host major events such as the Grand Prix, we see a significant increase in bookings. The Grand Prix is ​​one of the biggest sports entertainment events in the world, showcasing Melbourne, Australia and the Pacific at large, as highly inspiring and desirable destinations for the rest of the world,” said Mrs. Derry.

“The return of full AFL crowds has also been encouraging, and festivals and events are attracting holidaymakers to hotels across the city. The Victorian government deserves kudos for bringing the Commonwealth Games to life in 2026, and next year’s 114th Rotary International Convention is expected to draw more than 20,000 visitors. »

“Victoria State Government stimulus packages, such as the Victoria Travel Voucher Scheme, have been successful in stimulating demand, and we believe the travel scheme has had a significant positive impact over the of the Easter period. Another successful measure is the Midweek Melbourne Money initiative which supports bars and restaurants. Over 300,000 claims have been made since the program began on March 7, 2022. This helps create a vibrancy in the city that attracts hotel guests.

“Corporate and business meetings are slowly resuming, but there is still a long way to go.”

“Continued investment in sporting, arts and cultural events is essential, as it creates jobs and supports local businesses.”

“Most hotel and tourism operators in the city are still suffering from the impact of Covid on business operations. The pandemic has created a number of issues for the industry, including the ability to attract people who want to pursue careers in hospitality. »

“We employ over 2,100 workers in Victoria, but we are still trying to recruit for 160 positions which remain vacant.”

“From an immediate point of view, we need a return of skilled and unskilled workers, as well as a rapid increase in international students. The tourism and hospitality industry is a dynamic and rewarding industry, and to attract talent we need people to be convinced that this is a sustainable career path, which offers the opportunity incredible career development that opens doors all over the world.”

“It’s not stressed enough, but tourism is one of the main drivers of Australia’s economic growth, with domestic and international tourism spending totaling $122 billion in the pre-Covid financial year. In the same year, Australia generated $60.8 billion in gross domestic product from direct tourism.

“Investment by local and international companies in upgrading existing hotels and building new ones has been unprecedented over the past five years. Melbourne now has world-class hotels both in the city center and, increasingly, in the larger regional suburbs, which have been vital to the sustainability of local communities.”

“These investments require active and positive government support at all levels, our industry continues to face major challenges and is far from returning to pre-Covid levels.”

About Accor

Accor is a world leading hotel group made up of more than 5,300 establishments and 10,000 restaurants in 110 countries. The group has one of the most diverse and integrated hotel ecosystems in the industry, comprising more than 40 brands of luxury, premium, midscale and budget hotels, entertainment and nightlife venues, restaurants and bars, branded private residences, shared accommodation properties, concierge services, co-working spaces and more. Accor’s unrivaled position in lifestyle hospitality – one of the industry’s fastest growing categories – is led by Ennismore, a joint venture, in which Accor holds a majority stake. Ennismore is a creative hospitality company with a global collective of entrepreneurial, founder-driven brands with purpose at their heart. Accor has an unrivaled portfolio of distinctive brands and approximately 260,000 employees worldwide. Members benefit from the company’s comprehensive loyalty program – ALL – Accor Live Limitless – a daily life companion that provides access to a wide variety of rewards, services and experiences. Through its Planet 21 – Acting Here, Accor Solidarity, RiiSE and ALL Heartist Fund initiatives, the Group focuses on driving positive action through business ethics, responsible tourism, environmental sustainability, community engagement, diversity and inclusiveness. Founded in 1967, Accor SA is headquartered in France and is listed on the Euronext Paris Stock Exchange (ISIN code: FR0000120404) and on the OTC market (Ticker: ACCYY) in the United States. For more information, visit group.accor.com or follow Accor on TwitterFacebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

Claire Haigh
Accor Communications Director, Pacific
Accor

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