by Michael J. Shapiro | July 20, 2018

The U.S. hotel industry experienced a record-breaking second quarter, according to data just released from STR, as well as the 100th consecutive month of growth in revenue per available room. June's year-over-year RevPAR increase put the streak at the century mark; the last time RevPAR dropped on a year-over-year basis was February 2010. That streak could well continue into 2019, based on STR's forecast.

Meanwhile, each of the primary performance metrics from the second quarter was the highest of any second quarter on record. Occupancy climbed 1.1 percent year-over-year to 70.2 percent, average daily rate rose 2.9 percent to $131.02 and RevPAR shot up 4 percent to $91.94. Demand continued to significantly outpace supply growth, 3.1 percent vs. 2 percent.

"The second quarter of 2018 was another record-breaker as the industry rolled to 100 straight months of RevPAR growth," said Bobby Bowers, STR's senior vice president of operations. "Even though there was a slight artificial lift from the Easter calendar shift at the beginning of the quarter, Q2 RevPAR growth accelerated from what we saw in Q1 [3.5%]. The industry continues to benefit from demand across the travel segments as well as favorable macroeconomic conditions."

The only Top 25 Market to record double-digit increases in both RevPAR and ADR for the quarter was San Francisco/San Mateo, where RevPAR shot up 10.4 percent to $203.84 and ADR rose 10.1 percent to $238.09. The reopening of the Moscone Center contributed to conference-related demand boost in San Francisco, STR noted.

Houston scored the second-highest RevPAR increase, up 9.2 percent to $71.05, thanks to enjoying the highest occupancy growth, which was up 4.4 percent to 65.6 percent. Miami/Hialeah, in Florida, reported the third-largest RevPAR increase, up 7.7 percent to $143.22, and the second-highest ADR hike, which was up 5.6 percent to $185.27.

"The start of summer provided an added demand boost for the major markets," Bowers added. "That influx of demand lifted hotelier pricing power, as ADR growth was 70 basis points higher in the major markets, even with significantly more new rooms available."

New York ranked first in all major categories for the quarter in terms of absolute values: Occupancy was 90 percent, ADR was $273.67 and RevPAR was $246.24.