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Hotels showed signs of recovery after a very problematic 2010 with occupancy rates higher in Q1 2011 than the previous quarter. Rates in Q1 2011 are comparable to those registered in Q1 2010.
The trend is still for hotels, especially in Luxury segment, to drive rates down in order to compete and this looks set to continue. A "risk discount" seems to be being applied in the case of hotels in areas deemed prone to further political strife.
Middle Eastern, Indian and Chinese visitors continue to be a growing presence in the Bangkok tourism industry especially during the low season. However traditional tourist markets, the mainstay of the Upper/Luxury segment (ULS), have begun to return to the city. The effect of the reduction in long term bookings after events last April and May appears to be abating.
Future supply in 2011 and 2012 will further test hotels’ ability to fill their rooms. Only continued strong growth in tourism can mitigate this situation. There will be no respite for the industry for some time to come.