Chief investment officer of hospitality, McWhinney, Denver
Despite the volatile nature of the oil industry, the national economy has gotten back on track over the past five years, which has resulted in a change in consumer behavior across the country. With a stable economy, consumers are now making more money, which allows them to spend more. An added benefit of this stability is the rise in leisure travel. Leisure travel, that is travel for pleasure rather than for business, has reemerged as a national trend, greatly benefitting states like Colorado that have a diverse offering for tourists and guests.
Colorado is consistently one of the most sought after destinations in the U.S., and in 2014, set state records for the tourism industry, with 71.3 million visitors spending $18.6 billion within our borders. In 2014, Colorado saw a 7.4 percent increase over 2013 in this spending, nearly 3 percent more than the national average of a 4.5 percent growth. Additionally, Denver trends are showing a 9 percent hotel valuation index growth in 2015, which outpaces the national growth of 7 percent. These statistics indicate that Colorado is outpacing the national tourism growth rates in every category. What’s most interesting is that 66 percent of the money spent was a result of lodging costs for overnight visitors.
Read the entire article in the Dec. 2-Dec. 15 issue of the CREJ.