Port Douglas stands out
AUSTRALIANS holidaying at home have driven growth in the Far North’s hotel accommodation sector with Port Douglas described as ‘‘a stand out.’’
The latest TTF-HOSTPLUS National Accommodation Barometer shows that Port Douglas was the ‘‘ stand- out destination’’ of the country’s four popular beach getaways (Whitsundays, Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie) while Cairns continued to show consistent growth.
The report said Port Douglas occupancy was holding ‘‘steady’’ against a strong increase in rates, driving up the revenue per available room by 24 per cent for the June quarter.
It said occupancy was slightly down to 44.8 per cent (a -3 per cent fall) but up 3.6 per cent for the year while the average room rate had climbed by nearly 25 per cent to $168.16 for the quarter and 13.5 per cent for the year. Revenue per available room was up 24 per cent to $75.34 and 22 per cent for the year.
The report said in Cairns improved occupancy and increased rates resulted in revenue per available room growth of 3.3 per cent.
‘‘This represented the 10th consecutive quarter of growth in occupancy and revenue per available room for the market,’’ it said.
Occupancy had increased by half a per cent to 62.6 per cent, a rise of 2.8 per cent for the year, the average room rate grew by 2.5 per cent to $109.93, an increase of 4.5 per cent for the year and revenue per available room was $68.82, a 3.3 per cent rise and 9.1 per cent for the year.
TTF executive director Adele Labine-Romain said Australians deciding tb stay at home to holiday was behind the resurgence.
She said there was a strong domestic traveller market.
‘‘There has been significant interest from Melbourne and Sydney with people wanting to travel to warmer climates,’’ Ms Labine-Romain said.
‘‘More importantly there are people within Queensland travelling to Far North Queensland.
‘‘It’s good to see Queenslanders wanting to visit north Queensland, their own backyard.’’
But Ms Labine-Romain warned that the region’s tourism industry needed to learn from putting their eggs in one basket.
She said the fall in international numbers over the past five to seven years was because the industry was ‘‘geared towards Japan’’.
‘‘There was too much emphasis on the one market at the expense of others, leaving Far North Queensland very vulnerable,’’ Ms LabineRomain said.
She said while China was growing rapidly, it was vital to diversify and not rely on one source.