Nairobi — Nairobi has been rated third most expensive city for a good night’s sleep in Africa, according to a new survey produced by hospitality research firm STR Global.
According to the survey, the average rate for a hotel room in the first six months of 2015 was $144.76.
This compares with $215.75 for a room in Lagos and $231.78 in Addis Ababa which tops the list.
Cape Town comes in fourth place at $122.30 followed by $105.73 in Casablanca $103.54 in Cairo, $72.90 in Johannesburg and $70.70 in Sharm El Sheikh.
“A great deal of the reason for the difference in rates across African cities is simply supply and demand. Addis Ababa has a shortage of top quality hotels. However, with the Ethiopian economy growing at a rapid rate of more than 10 percent per annum for the whole of the last decade, with more conferences coming to the city by virtue of its status as the seat of the African Union and with Ethiopian Airways on a similar growth trajectory to the country, thanks to new routes and increased passenger numbers, there is a high demand for premium hotel rooms,” explained STR Global Director of Business Development Thomas Emanuel.
Looking at how hotel prices have changed over the past year there have been substantial rate rises in Sharm El Sheikh that went up by 42.5 percent, Addis Ababa, up 14.9 percent, Johannesburg, up 11 percent, Cape Town, up 10.8 percent and Cairo, up 10.6 percent.
“Whereas, there has been a recovery in Lagos up 5.8 percent whilst Nairobi is broadly the same and Casablanca has suffered a 4 percent decline,” the report indicates.
In the face of the recent terrorism incidents in Kenya, Nairobi’s hoteliers have chosen to maintain rates but they have suffered with lower occupancy.
According to the report, the increases in Sharm El Sheikh and Cairo can be explained as a recovery in tourism to Egypt, following several years of political unrest. Cape Town’s improvement is due to increased demand and no recent increases in supply since the 2010 World Cup.
The rate decline in Casablanca is due in part to economic weakness in France, its major source market and in part to currency fluctuations.
“The wide disparity in room rates with exceptional prices being achieved in places where there is a shortage of supply; make it clear that there are parts of Africa that offer very attractive prospects for hotel investors,” Emanuel adds.
The survey was released ahead of the Africa Hotel Investment Forum (AHIF), taking place at the end of September in Addis Ababa.