America's Cup lifts Auckland occupancy to 2021 high
The 36th America’s cup, originally scheduled to start on 6 March 2021, was delayed a few days because of lockdown in measures in Auckland. Fortunately for hoteliers, a lift in demand was right on time and helped push the market’s daily occupancy to its highest level for this early portion of 2021.
Amid the lockdown, the market’s daily occupancy levels were below 50% for the period of 28 February-8 March. That included a low of 41.8% on 2 March.
Hotel demand grew consistently after the lockdown was lifted and led to daily occupancies between 60%-70% for the time of the America’s Cup.
Preliminary data for 13 March showed that occupancy reached a peak of 73.0%, the highest level in the market for the period of 1 January-22 March 2021. By 17 March, occupancy had slipped a bit to 66.8%.
The rise in occupancy was also accompanied by improvement in average daily rate (ADR) and revenue per available room (RevPAR). Auckland was sitting at its lowest level in each metric on 4 march with ADR at NZD192.78 and RevPAR at NZD82.47. By 13 March, each metric improved to their highest levels since January 2021: ADR (NZD264.47) and RevPAR (NZD192.96). On that same day, Auckland posted its highest year-over-year increase in ADR (+20.1%) for any day this year. It Is important to note that the corresponding day last year was lowered than historical averages because of the pandemic.
All in all, there was material improvement for Auckland’s hotels during the time of the event. Large sporting events have long been key demand generators for the industry, and as the pandemic situation improves around the globe, so should the volume of events around the world. At the same time, there is still uncertainty and the potential for a return to cancellations if COVID metrics worsen.