Hotel articles

Has Social Media Killed Hotel Grading ?

 -Frank Corr examines a system in decline
 
To indulge in a culinary metaphor, grading has always been a ‘hot potato’ for Irish hoteliers.
 Back in 1948 a Miss Brigid Duignan bitterly complained to the Irish Tourist Board that after she had spent her money on wallpaper and new china, an Inspector had called for ‘a cup of tea’, after which he promptly downgraded her premises.
 ‘Is that any way to treat a woman trying to build a business’, she moaned.
 She was not alone among hoteliers, who ever since have had issues with inspectors from ITB, Bord Fáilte or their latter day successors. Ever since Sean Lemass, in the Tourist Traffic Act of 1939, provided for the compulsory registration of hotels, their owners have battled with the ‘Powers that Be’ on the issue of grading. In the early years, hundreds of premises were simply dumped out of the system because, even though they had the word ‘Hotel’ over the door, they were really pubs or guest houses. Grading those who remained was far from a scientific process. An Inspector called- often on his or her bicycle, had a a look and a cup of tea and made an arbitrary decision on the grade to be awarded. By 1951 the Irish Hotels Federation was demanding a ‘more scientific approach’ and the inclusion of ‘information symbols’ as well as details of how Bord Fáilte arrived at its grading decisions. A few years later, IHF President F.X.Burke wanted hotels classified as ‘de luxe’, ‘city’, ‘resort’ or ‘provincial’.  A new row erupted over the number of bathrooms needed in hotels. The Federation wanted one for every ten rooms and Bord Failte demanded one for eight.
 
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Ashford tops World List

 Ashford Castle in Cong, Co Mayo, has been voted the world's number one hotel by 'Virtuoso', an international network of luxury travel agencies. The announc

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ement was made last night at the “Best of the Best” awards at the annual Virtuoso Travel Week event, a luxury travel show which is taking place in Las Vegas. The annual competition recognises the travel industry’s top properties and hoteliers. This was the first time ever that an Irish hotel was nominated.
 
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Castleknock's 10th Birthday

Castleknock Hotel & Country Club celebrated its 10th Birthday with a Gala Dinner .  Special guests Minister Leo Varadkar, Deputy Mayor of Fingal, Cou

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ncellor Jack Chambers and Chief Executive of Fingal County Council Paul Reid joined members of the Board of Directors of FBD Property & Leisure who own and operate the Castleknock Hotel & Country Club and General Manager of the hotel Guy Thompson in welcoming guests to the celebratory event to mark the occasion.  
 Pictured are Andrew Kavanagh, Michelle and Alan Finglas. 
 
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Dublin Hotel Rates up 28%

The average hotel price in Dublin has surged 28% from this time last year, according to the trivago Hotel Price Index (tHPI) prepared each month by hotel search site trivago.ie. An overnight stay in Irish capital will cost an average of €168, making it the ninth most expensive city in Europe this month.
Meanwhile, Edinburgh is the most expensive city in Europe in August, as prices have increased by 41% from July 2015 ahead of the annual Edinburgh Festival.
 
Hotel prices in Dublin have seen a 28% year-on-year increase at €168, up from €131 in August 2014. This is 18% higher than the national average yearly rise of 10%. However, despite this yearly surge, prices in the capital have remained at the same average price as July 2015.
Elsewhere in Ireland, average hotel prices have seen a slight month-on-month increase of 2% to €127 for August, from €124 in July 2015. The largest month-on-month increases are to be found in Dingle (up 9% to €123), Tralee (up 8% to €119) and Kilkenny (up 7% to €113).
 
 
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Dublin Hotel Rates near €100

Crowe Horwath’s Annual Irish Hotel Survey 2015 reports gains all round but highlights dominance in the capital. Dublin recorded occupancy levels of 77.2 per cent in 2014 compared to 76.3 per cent the previous year. Average room rates have also risen significantly from €90.73 to €97.25 or by 7.2 per cent.

And while this compares with the 2006 peak of €120.38, it is ahead of the midlands and east (€79.36), the southwest (€79.43) and west (€67.50).

On a national level room occupancy grew from 65.9 per cent to 67.8 per cent. Average room rates rose to €82.29 from €77.49.

Key influences in the growth were an increase of 8.9 per cent in overseas visitors; a weakening euro against the dollar and sterling ;and increased domestic activity . Internet bookings accounted for 43.2 per cent of reservations.

 

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