With the British Lions in town, along with the Australian Local Government National Assembly conference event and Parliamentary sitting, the ACT has been a veritable melange of brawn and brains over the last four days as the influx of rugby fans and government officials saw Accor’s Canberra hotels reach their highest demand levels since the US Presidential visit in November 2011.
Novotel Canberra saw 6.3 % growth across a four day period from 16-19 June 2013 and Mercure Canberra saw growth of 26.9% – which was primarily made up of Australian Rugby Union fans, Sky and Fox Sports cast and crew and Australian Local Government conference attendees.
The average nightly rate at both Novotel and Mercure Canberra averaged $330, which is approximately $190 higher than the average daily rate, and inbound room contribution was up 400%.
Scott Boyes, Accor’s Regional General Manager for NSW and ACT said it was pleasing to see such high demand in Canberra over the past week, even better that the Brumbies were able to win against the British and Irish Lions.
“It has been a huge week for our Canberra hotels and it’s great to see Australians showing their support for the Lions tour. In turn, it’s having a huge knock-on effect for the tourism and hospitality industry and our hotels in Canberra have been almost at capacity over the last four nights.
“Group bookings at Novotel Canberra accounted for 58% occupancy and 56% of revenue, while Mercure Canberra saw group bookings equating for 65% occupancy and 57% of revenue, which is huge for these hotels. It goes to show that an event-based strategy is a real driver of tourism to the hospitality sector and we at Accor are committed to supporting governments and event organisers to make it happen”.
As the British Lions make their way up and down the east coast of Australia, the best is yet to come as the first of the test matches get underway this Saturday (22 June). With the third test match against the Wallabies at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium on 6 July set to be a sell-out, Accor’s Pullman, Novotel and Ibis hotels at Sydney Olympic Park are already nearing capacity.