Lodging Investment Slows, Led by Domestic Buyers

Hotel sector investment sales took a hit during the first half of the year. U.S. hotel sales volume plummeted 79 percent to $7.3 billion in the first half of 2008 compared with the first half of last year, according to Real Capital Analytics’ Hotel Capital Trends Quarterly report. That represents the lowest sales volume and largest percentage drop of any property type during the first half of the year. On a worldwide scale, global hotel sales dropped 68 percent. Interestingly enough, average pricing per unit reached its highest point ever–$175,000 per unit. That is largely attributable to sales of high-end, full-service properties and a growing interest in quality, the report noted. More than 60 percent of assets sold in the first quarter were located in primary markets.Eighty percent of the top 25 hotel buyers in the first half were domestic, led by Inland Real Estate securing the overall top spot, having acquired 22 properties in the first half valued at $900 million. Hodges Ward Elliott netted the top spot among brokerage firms, based on the number and value of its hotel transactions.