Leisure & Hospitality Hotel giant reports room revenue up in Middle East By Matt Smith August 9, 2023 IHG Holiday Inn Dubai Al-Maktoum Airport: owner IHG operates nearly 6,300 hotels across 18 brands worldwide Q2 increase of 18% RevPar for Europe and Mena up 42% year-on-year Qatar World Cup boosted 2022 revenue IHG Hotel & Resorts, whose 18 brands include Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza, has reported an 18 percent rise in revenue per available room at its hotels in the Middle East in the second quarter of the year. The company, which is listed in London and New York, said the year-on-year increase in its Middle East portfolio reflects the differing easing of Covid-19-related travel restrictions around the world. Revenue per available room (RevPar) is a key industry metric that reflects both room prices and occupancy levels. IHG Q2 RevPar rose 4 percent year-on-year in Australia, 27 percent in continental Europe, 55 percent in Southeast Asia and 82 percent in Japan. IHG targets young Saudis with new hotel brand Holiday Inn-owner sees summer to drive growth Gulf hospitality market banks on hotel-building surge Overall, RevPar for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the first half of 2023 rose 42 percent year-on-year and was up 12.5 percent versus the first six months of 2019 – the last first-half period prior to the pandemic. IHG’s RevPar growth for the full year 2023 is forecast to be slower, as 2022 was a standout year. RevPar rose 52.3 percent year on year in the 12 months to the end of 2022, thanks in part to Qatar’s hosting of the Fifa World Cup in November-December. IHG, which operates nearly 6,300 hotels worldwide and whose CEO Elie Maalouf is fluent in Arabic, manages 28 percent of its hotels with 72 percent franchised. The company operates 39 hotels across five brands in Saudi Arabia and plans to open a further 30 hotels in the kingdom in the next three to five years, according to a July 26 announcement. On Wednesday, IHG signed a deal with the government of Sharjah to launch its first Voco-brand hotel in the UAE’s third largest emirate by population. The 191-room, “premium” hotel is slated to open in 2027. Last week, IHG signed a similar agreement with hotel owner Aqarat to launch franchise-operated hotels under another of its brands in Dubai and Kuwait. IHG’s Middle East portfolio also includes four hotels in Lebanon.