Declining unemployment figures despite growing numbers of inhabitants, while the gross domestic product per capita and level of disposable income are on the rise – all of this has been true both for Cologne and Dusseldorf in recent years. "Both cities are economically strong and attract many travellers wishing to attend numerous events, trade fairs and congresses and make use of the wide range of shopping facilities, a vibrant nightlife and cultural highlights. This is what makes both Rhine metropolises attractive as hotel locations as well“, explains Kay Constanze Strobl, Head of Advisory & Valuation Services at Christie & Co and author of the report.
Cologne leads the way in supply, but Dusseldorf is slowly catching up
In the past five years, the number of hotels and bed and breakfast hotels in Cologne grew by 1.2 per cent, and the number of hotel beds by as much as 8.4 per cent. With this, the supply in the cathedral city in 2015 arrived at a total of 251 hotels and bed and breakfast hotels and 29,381 beds. Seven hotels will enter the market in the next years, adding 1,457 rooms to the overall offer. In the same period, Dusseldorf saw a decline in the supply of hotel establishments, as their number was falling to 211, i.e. by 1.4 per cent, since 2011. On the other hand, the capital of North Rhine-Westphalia recorded an increase of hotel beds of 8.7 per cent last year compared to 2011, arriving at a total of 25,383. And the pipeline is full: At the moment, hotels offering 1,262 rooms are under construction, and another 641 are in the stage of planning. Four hotels are set to open before the end of this year.
Hotels predominantly in the 3- and 4-star categories – most of them branded
Overall, according to DEHOGA (German hotel and restaurant association), around 38 per cent of hotels in Cologne and 46 per cent of hotels in Dusseldorf are officially classified, with the largest part in both cities ranking in the 3- and 4-star categories: 87 per cent in Cologne and 89 per cent in Dusseldorf. "It comes as no surprise that the majority of Cologne and Dusseldorf hotels are affiliated with an international brand. In the regional capital, this share accounts for even more than 75 per cent - and the tendency is rising", says Alexandra Markhof, Consultant Advisory & Valuation Services at Christie & Co and co-author of the report. The number-one hotel chain in both cities is AccorHotels accounting for 23 per cent of all branded hotels in Cologne and 12 per cent in Dusseldorf. What's more, hotels in Cologne and Dusseldorf are very successful: According to a ranking conducted by trade magazine Allgemeine Hotel- und Gastronomie-Zeitung, 23 of the 200 hotels with the highest turnover in Germany are located in one of the two metropolitan cities on the river Rhine.
Trade fairs and events determine performance development
The extent to which the operating performance in the rival Rhine metropolises depends on the respective trade fair and event calendar is equally illustrated by the figures of STR Global: Rising numbers of arrivals and overnight stays in the past five years drove up the room rates, and with it the RevPAR, in Cologne. In 2015, the cathedral city posted a record year. "No wonder, because both the Koelnmesse fair and the Lanxess Arena achieved excellent results in the past year. In comparison, the figures for July 2016 suggest that this year's results for the Cologne hotel market will remain below the 2015 performance", explains Ms. Strobl. In the period from 2011 to 2015 the Dusseldorf hotel market showed fluctuating key performance indicators. "2015 was a weak year for trade fairs, which was also reflected in the market performance. However, the data received so far for the current year - benefiting from the METAV, drupa, wire&tube and K trade fairs - allows for an extremely positive forecast", concludes Ms. Markhof.
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