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STR: North Carolina sees 65 hotel closings, performance lift following Hurricane Florence

October 11, 2018 Hotel Trends No Comments Email Email

Among Hurricane Florence-affected states, North Carolina reported the greatest impact on hotel property status and performance, according to an analysis from STR’s Consulting & Analytics team. 

As of 3 October, 65 hotels accounting for 4,422 rooms in North Carolina were confirmed to be closed due to storm-related damage. According to Dominik Kozissnik, STR’s global census director, roughly half of the closed properties already have planned re-opening dates, most of which will be later this month or in November. South Carolina, on the other hand, reported three closings that totaled 323 rooms.

Submarket Closed Hotels Closed Rooms % of Submarket Supply
Coastal Carolina, NC 24 1,406 21.6%
Wilmington, NC 21 1,642 20.3%
North Carolina Southeast Area 18 1,282 9.3%
North Carolina Northeast Area 2 92 1.4%
Myrtle Beach/South, SC 2 244 1.2%
Myrtle Beach/North, SC 1 79 0.8%

Source: STR / confirmed closings as of 3 October 2018
During that same week, South Carolina and Virginia experienced occupancy declines of 6.1% and 5.0%, respectively.

“Hurricane-affected areas usually see a similar pattern when it comes to hotel performance—a demand decline prior to a storm’s arrival and a demand spike once the storm dissipates or moves on,” said Hannah Smith, STR consultant. “With Hurricane Florence specifically, that trend was most visible in North Carolina, likely from the combination of fewer hotels operating and more demand from displaced residents and emergency workers. On the other hand, performance decreases were more common in South Carolina and Virginia, supporting the idea that disasters such as these can negatively affect performance in less strongly affected areas.”

Top and bottom five submarkets ranked by occupancy comparison:

Submarket Occupancy % Change Average Daily Rate % Change
Raleigh Rural Areas, NC 90.2% +71.5% $87.77 +17.4%
Florence/Dillon, SC 84.4% +69.8% $94.31 +15.7%
Rocky Mount/Wilson, NC 82.0% +59.4% $85.67 +11.5%
NC Southeast Area 80.8% +40.0% $93.57 +18.4%
Greensboro, NC 77.3% +32.2% $97.17 +9.5%
Hilton Head/Beaufort, SC 46.5% -19.1%    $149.92 -0.7%
Williamsburg, VA 37.8% -20.2%    $105.91 -2.7%
North Charleston, SC 53.9% -23.0%  $90.05 +2.5%
Charleston/West Ashley, SC 49.1% -27.8%     $188.45 -2.0%
Mount Pleasant/Isle Of Palms, SC 44.8% -29.3%     $130.92 -9.8%

Source: STR/ comparison of week of 16-22 September 2018 with week of 17-23 September 2017

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