Hawaii hotel occupancy to 79.5% - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Hawaii hotel occupancy to 79.5%

By Howard Dicus

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii hotels ran fuller as July arrived, aided by increased air connections and the arrival of RIMPAC guests.

Statewide occupancy rose to 79.5 percent for the seven days to last Sunday, Hospitality Advisors LLC reported Friday, about five percentage points better than the same period last year, with room rates up an average 6.4 percent.

There was great variety from one island to the next, however, and Oahu and Kauai seem to be doing better than Maui and the Big Island so far this summer.

Oahu ran 88.7 percent full last week, compared to 86 percent the week before and 81.6 percent last year, with room rates up almost 12 percent from year-ago levels, partly because of the arrival of guests who are here for the RIMPAC military exercises lasting all this month. Oahu also benefited from new non-stops from New York JFK (Hawaiian Airlines) and Washington Dulles (United Airlines).

Kauai was 79.1 percent full, up from 77 percent the week before and 70.5 percent last year, with room rates up 6 percent from year-ago levels to an average $237 a night. Kauai has more flights from the West Coast than it did a year ago.

Maui County hotels averaged 71.5 percent full, about the same as both the week before and the year before, with room rates up 2.3 percent from year-ago levels, barely enough to cover inflation, but the average room rate was still $272, highest in the state. The Maui figures, close to the nationwide average occupancy of 71.7 percent, may also have been affected by more rooms coming onto the market, including some that had been offline for renovation and the new 400-plus room Courtyard by Marriott built by Alexander & Baldwin Inc. near Kahului International Airport.

Big Island hotels, which usually have more unsold inventory, ran 61.7 percent full on average, about the same as the week before but four percentage points better than last year at the same time, with an average room rate of $190 that was up 1% from then. Big Island room rates cover a wide range of actual prices with higher rates at the Waikoloa resorts most of the time.

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