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Hotel Occupancy Nears 80% in L.A. County

May 16, 2000|Stephen Gregory

Strong local convention business and the nation's continuing obsession with travel helped push occupancy to nearly 80% at Los Angeles County's major hotels in March, allowing operators to raise average room prices more than 3% above rates a year ago. Average price per hotel room rose to $120.72 in March from $117.03 a year earlier, according to PKF Consulting in Los Angeles. At the same time, occupancy grew by nearly 5%. Michael Collins, executive vice president of the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau, said four events in March at the Los Angeles Convention Center generated 12,000 more overnight stays than did a comparable number of shows a year ago. The March numbers helped boost first-quarter room rates roughly $5 to $121.58, while average occupancy hit 76%, a 1% increase from last year. In Orange County, a well-attended cardiology convention in March helped lift the average room price 10% in March to $119.50, while pushing occupancy to 80%, an increase of 3.5% from a year ago, according PKF analyst Melissa Mills.

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