HOTEL OCCUPANCY IN CNMI BELOW HEALTHY LEVEL

News Release

Hotel Association of the Northern Marianas Islands Saipan, CNMI

December 29, 2011

The Hotel Association of the Northern Mariana Islands reported 64.33 percent occupancy among its 12 member hotels for Nov. 2011, a 10 percent increase from Nov. 2010.

However, so far this calendar year, occupancy is down 3 percent compared to the same period last year.

47,205 of 73,380 available room nights sold in November 2011, compared to 38.901 of 71,455 of available room nights sold over the same period last year.

Room rates were $88.49 during the month, compared to $89.17 last November.

"At one time, the Northern Marianas enjoyed occupancy rates of over 95 percent and room rates of over $150 a night," said HANMI chairman Nick Nishikawa. "To enjoy those prosperous days again, we must all work together as private businesses, government, and individual citizens to make tourism our priority. More promotions – and a bit of good luck with the international economy –can bring tourism money back to the NMI."

So far this year, hotel occupancy is at an average 63.33 percent, well below the healthy industry indicator average of 80 percent and 3 percent lower than last year.

"Over the last year, HANMI has lost the membership of a major hotel which shut down, and with that, we also lost a large amount of government revenue," said Nishikawa. "We see some hope for revival with new flights expected to launch next year, but they must absolutely be supported by appropriate advertising, or those flights will not survive. We should seize this lifeline while we can."

HANMI was established in 1985 as a professional forum for the hospitality industry of the NMI.

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