Report: DC Hotels Struggled During Shutdown

NATIONAL REPORT—HotStats, which provides a profit and loss benchmarking service to hoteliers, has released a special report regarding the performance of the hospitality industry during the partial federal shutdown in Washington, DC.

According to the report, hotels saw an 88.8% year-on-year drop in GOPPAR for the market during the month of January as a whole. Many factors prompted the drop, including the closure of the Smithsonian museums, the National Zoo, and the National Gallery of Art. These, combined with delays at Reagan National Airport and Dulles International Airport, culminated in a drop of four percentage points in occupancy, to 54.5%, compared to the same period the previous year, according to HotStats.

In addition to decreased occupancy, the market reported a consistent decline across all revenue centers. TRevPAR experienced the negative effects of this demand contraction, with a year-over-year 4.9% fall to $161.95. The 2% increase in average room rate over that period, to $191.02, was not enough to offset declining occupancy, leading to a year-over-year drop of 4.9% in RevPAR to $104.17.

Not only did the shutdown produce city closures, it also precipitated canceled events, such as the 2019 S&T Cybersecurity and Innovation showcase and the 2019 AGA Financial Systems Summits—both moved from January to March. This took a toll on all departments, HotStats reported, especially food & beverage through conference and banqueting, with a 17.7% year-over-year decrease in room hire revenue per sq. ft. The results for that same period of Food RevPAR (down 3.9%) and Beverage RevPAR (down 15%) also contributed to the 6.9% fall in total F&B RevPAR to $48.71.