European cities hotel forecast 2011 & 2012

Best placed to grow

Europe has the biggest hotel and travel market in the world, but its cities and its hotel markets are undergoing change. Countries and cities alike are being buffeted by new economic, social, technological, environmental and political currents. Europe has already begun to feel the winds of change as the old economic order shifts eastwards and economic growth becomes more elusive. While some cities struggle, hotel markets in other, often bigger and better connected cities prosper. For many countries provincial markets have been hit harder than those in the larger cities.

In this report we look forward to 2012 and ask which European cities’ hotel sectors are best placed to take advantage of the changing economic order. Are these the cities of the so called ‘old’ Europe or the cities of the fast growing ‘emerging’ economies such as Istanbul and Moscow? What will be driving the growth? What obstacles do they face? Will the glut of new hotel rooms built in the boom years prove difficult to digest?

The 17 cities in this report are all important tourist destinations. Some are capitals or regional centres, some combine roles as leading international financial and asset management centres, transportation hubs or tourism and conference destinations. Some like London and Paris are major economies in their own right, of a size larger than medium-sized national economies such as Sweden or Switzerland. We have provided some city rankings for comparison, but of course it’s not just about growth rates. Each city operates at differing levels of maturity and profitability and they are all at different stages in the hotel cycle, reflecting wider global and domestic macroeconomic drivers as well as demand elements specific to that city.