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by Michael J. Shapiro | April 14, 2010

Smith Travel Research improved its forecast for the U.S. hotel industry last week. The company expects the pace of the industry recovery to pick up in the second and third quarters this year, leading to year-over-year rises in occupancy (1.9 percent, to 55.8 percent) and average daily rate (2.3 percent, to $95.45). Yet STR is calling for an 0.5 percent decrease in revenue per available room, to $53.22. Demand for the year is expected to outpace supply, with growths of 4.1 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively. For 2011, the forecast calls for growth in occupancy (1.9 percent, to 56.8 percent); average daily rate (3.5 percent, to $98.79) and RevPAR (5.4 percent, to $56.12).