The Trends: Hotels Pack Pipeline

At midyear, 10,781 lodging projects and 1.8 million guest rooms were being developed worldwide. That is a record high and a 28 percent year-over-year jump for each metric, according to Lodging Econometrics’ inaugural “Global Construction Pipeline Report.” Forty-one percent, or 4,468 projects, are under construction, and 3,819 are scheduled to start in the next year, while 2,494 are in the early planning stages. Rooms under construction, 836,567, account for 46 percent of the pipeline, trailed by 561,538 rooms scheduled to start in the next 12 months and 421,381 that are in early planning stages.The global financial downturn, however, is clearly impacting the lodging industry. “A falloff from these record pipeline totals has already started to occur as the credit crisis and economic slowdown have begun to affect developer sentiment,” the executive summary stated. “For projects already in the pipeline, cancellations and postponements are on the rise. New project announcements into the pipeline are slowing.”Not surprisingly, the United States has the largest pipeline, with 5,883 projects and 785,547 rooms. Its nearest competitor, albeit trailing significantly, is China, with 1,240 projects and 323,956 rooms. Among companies, InterContinental Hotels Group Plc has the largest pipeline with 1,645 projects and 218,219 rooms.