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Ireland Hotels Market Report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Hotels market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

Covered in this report

This report will examine the hotel sector within the Irish tourism industry. This includes hotels (all types) and only looks at other accommodation providers from a competitive viewpoint such as bed and breakfast accommodation, guesthouses, caravans, camping, rented accommodation, hostels, and staying with a friend or relative.

Although the booking and use of accommodation services for business purposes are discussed, this Report will focus primarily on the booking and use of accommodation services for leisure purposes. Data in this report includes general information on the tourism industry for both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland, but its main focus is upon the hotel sector of the market. While this report makes mention of business travelers where appropriate, it focuses mainly on leisure travelers and holidaymakers.

What you need to know

Domestic and overseas visitors are at an all-time high for Ireland which has bolstered the Irish hotel industry. Visitor numbers are estimated to increase by 6% in 2018 compared to 2017’s figures and Mintel’s forecast highlights the positive benefits this has on future spending in the hotel sector. However, concerns exist over advancing occupancy rates to which RoI’s (Republic of Ireland) capital – Dublin – is struggling to meet. Greater investment in Dublin hotels could prove beneficial to meet demand, particularly as average hotel room rates have climbed significantly in 2018.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Emma McGeown, a leading analyst in the Tourism sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Irish visitor numbers are on the rise in Ireland with many seeking out hotels as their accommodation of choice. However, rife competition from Airbnb, means that hotels are under more pressure than ever to deliver on quality and a unique experience to justify the greater expense. Emma McGeown
Tourism Analyst

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Issues covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • Market sizes
            • Figure 1: Estimated total visitor numbers, 000s, IoI, NI, and RoI, 2013-23
            • Figure 2: Estimated visitor expenditure on accommodation, NI and RoI, 2013-18
          • Forecast
            • Figure 3: Estimated visitor expenditure on accommodation, IoI, RoI, and NI, 2013-23
          • Market drivers
            • Hotel prices on the rise across Ireland
              • RoI hotel occupancy rates rise, NI decrease
                • Dublin and Belfast increase supply with new hotels
                  • Companies and innovations
                    • The consumer
                      • Bed and breakfast favoured by Irish consumers
                        • Figure 4: Types of hotel stays by consumers in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, November 2018
                      • Mid-range hotels showing highest usage
                        • Figure 5: The type of hotel consumers have used during their last stay, NI and RoI, November 2018
                      • City breaks and romantic getaways are the top reason for hotel stays
                        • Figure 6: Reasons stated by consumers for a hotel stay in NI and/or RoI in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, November 2018
                      • Price comparison sites aid the hotel search
                        • Figure 7: Reasons stated by consumers for a hotel stay in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, November 2018
                    • The Market – What You Need to Know

                      • Visitors to IoI rise and accommodation providers reap the benefits
                        • Hotel prices on the rise across Ireland
                          • RoI hotel occupancy rates rise
                            • Dublin and Belfast increase supply with new hotels
                              • NI room occupancy decreases in 2018
                              • Market Sizes and Forecast

                                  • Visitors forecast to increase by 6% in 2018
                                    • Figure 8: Estimated total visitor numbers, 000s, IoI, NI, and RoI, 2013-23
                                    • Figure 9: Total visitors (excluding RoI domestic visitors), by country of residency, RoI, 2017
                                  • NI sector more reliant on GB visitors
                                    • Figure 10: Total visitors (excluding NI domestic visitors), by country of residency, NI, 2017
                                  • Hotel revenues estimated to increase in 2018
                                    • Figure 11: Estimated visitor expenditure on accommodation, IoI, RoI, and NI, 2013-23
                                • Market Drivers

                                  • Hotel prices continue to rise
                                    • Figure 12: Average hotel room price per night, by region, RoI, 2014-17
                                  • NI prices also increasing
                                    • Figure 13: Average hotel room price per night, NI, 2014-17
                                  • RoI hotels lead for number of beds
                                    • Figure 14: Number of accommodation providers in RoI, by accommodation type, 2018
                                    • Figure 15: Number of accommodation bed spaces in RoI, by accommodation type, 2018
                                  • Dublin occupancy rates rise
                                    • Figure 16: Annual accommodation room occupancy, by selected key tourism areas, 2017
                                  • 79 new hotels for RoI capital
                                    • RoI hotels hit with VAT rise
                                      • Belfast is home to almost half of NI hotels
                                        • Figure 17: Hotel room stock by local government district, 2017
                                        • Figure 18: Annual accommodation room occupancy, by key tourism areas, 2017
                                      • NI hotels see occupancy falter
                                        • Figure 19: Room occupancy rates, by month, 2017-18
                                    • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                      • Technology innovation appearing to set the standard for much of the industry
                                        • Jurys Inn brand under new ownership
                                          • Premier Inn reportedly expanding into RoI market imminently
                                            • Westmont Hospitality Group enter the Irish market
                                            • Who’s Innovating?

                                              • Augmented Reality starting to make its mark on the hotel industry
                                                • Alexa for Marriott hotel launches in the US
                                                  • Mobile room-key technology
                                                    • Marriott partners with Hostmaker in the UK to challenge Airbnb
                                                    • Companies and Brands

                                                        • Andras House Ltd (NI Only)
                                                          • Key Facts
                                                            • Hotel Portfolio
                                                              • Recent Developments
                                                                • Choice Hotels
                                                                  • Key Facts
                                                                    • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                      • Recent Developments
                                                                        • Dalata Hotel Group
                                                                          • Key Facts
                                                                            • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                              • Recent Developments
                                                                                • The Gresham Hotel Group (RoI Only)
                                                                                  • Key Facts
                                                                                    • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                      • Recent Developments
                                                                                        • Hastings Hotels (NI Only)
                                                                                          • Key Facts
                                                                                            • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                              • Recent Developments
                                                                                                • Hilton Hotels & Resorts
                                                                                                  • Key Facts
                                                                                                    • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                      • Recent Developments
                                                                                                        • IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)
                                                                                                          • Key Facts
                                                                                                            • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                              • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                • Irish Court Hotels (RoI Only)
                                                                                                                  • Key Facts
                                                                                                                    • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                      • Jurys Inn
                                                                                                                        • Key Facts
                                                                                                                          • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                            • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                              • Marriott Hotels
                                                                                                                                • Key Facts
                                                                                                                                  • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                                    • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                                      • Premier Inn
                                                                                                                                        • Key Facts
                                                                                                                                          • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                                            • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                                              • MHL Hotel Collection (RoI Only)
                                                                                                                                                • Key Facts
                                                                                                                                                  • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                                                    • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                                                      • Tetrarch Capital (RoI Only)
                                                                                                                                                        • Key Facts
                                                                                                                                                          • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                                                            • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                                                              • Tifco Hotel Group
                                                                                                                                                                • Key Facts
                                                                                                                                                                  • Hotel Portfolio
                                                                                                                                                                    • Recent Developments
                                                                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                                                                      • Bed and breakfast the top type of accommodation used
                                                                                                                                                                        • Mid-range hotels appeal to Irish consumers
                                                                                                                                                                          • City trips are the top reason for staying in a hotel
                                                                                                                                                                            • Quality is important for hotel guests
                                                                                                                                                                            • Types of Accommodation Used

                                                                                                                                                                                • Bed and breakfast offerings favoured by Irish consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 20: Types of hotel stays by consumers in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                • Bed & breakfast preferred by mature consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 21: Consumers who had a bed and breakfast stay in a hotel in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, by gender and age, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 22: Consumers who would describe their current financial situation as ‘healthy’ (eg I have money left at the end of the month for a few luxuries or to add to my savings), by age, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                • Younger consumers more likely to stay in accommodation only
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 23: Consumers who had an accommodation only stay in a hotel in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, November 2015 & November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 24: Consumers who had an accommodation only stay in a hotel in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, by age, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                              • Types of Hotels Used

                                                                                                                                                                                  • The majority opt for mid-market hotels
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 25: The type of hotel consumers have used during their last stay, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 26: Mid-price hotel performance, by room occupancy and average room rate per night, RoI, 2015-17
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Luxury hotels preferred by ABC1s
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 27: Consumers who described the last hotel they stayed in as being a luxury/boutique hotel (eg Ritz Carlton, Malmaison), by social class, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 28: Average room rates per night, by type of hotel, RoI, 2015-17
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Budget hotels popular among 16-24-year-olds
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 29: Consumers who described the last hotel they stayed in as being a budget/economy hotel (eg Premier Inn, Travelodge), NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                • Reasons for Hotel Stay

                                                                                                                                                                                    • City trips and romantic getaways top the reasons for a hotel
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 30: Reasons stated by consumers for a hotel stay in NI and/or RoI only in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Opportunities exist in promoting city trips to seniors
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 31: Consumers who stayed in a hotel in NI and/or RoI in the last 12 months for a city trip (eg for shopping, theatre, or sightseeing), by age, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Country and rural breaks popular among Irish consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 32: Consumers who stayed in a hotel in NI and/or RoI in the last 12 months for a country/rural hotel break or a seaside break, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Romantic getaways preferred by affluent consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Consumers who stayed in a hotel in NI and/or RoI in the last 12 months for a romantic getaway, NI and RoI, 2016-18
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 34: Consumers who stayed in a hotel in NI and/or RoI in the last 12 months for a romantic getaway, NI and RoI, 2016-18
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Attitudes Towards Hotels

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Luxury hotels ideal for special occasions
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 35: Agreement with statements relating to hotels, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Price comparison sites aid the hotel search
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 36: Agreement with the statement ‘Price comparison websites make finding hotels easy’, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Hotels must deliver on quality
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 37: Consumer agreement with the statements; ‘The quality of the hotel experience is just as important as the place you’re visiting’ and ‘It’s worth paying a bit more to have extra comfort/better facilities’, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Novelty hotels can deliver an experience
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 38: Consumer agreement with the statements; ‘novelty/themed hotels appeal to me (eg Titanic themed hotel, Game of Thrones hotel), by gender and age, NI and RoI, November 2018
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations, and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Data sources
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Generational cohort definitions
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Abbreviations