Bonus time for visitors as Panama hotel industry in doldrums

 
1,117Views 4Comments Posted 30/01/2020

Panama hotel occupancy has plunged to an all-time low of less than 39 %  from a high point of over 68% 10 years ago when optimists in the travel industry thought the country was on its way to becoming a world-class destination and investors rushed to overbuild new hostelries.

Due to the lack of promotion between 2012 and 2016, the numbers of the sector plummeted, and last year the occupation ended at 41% leading to the loss of thousands of jobs in the hotel and restaurant sector.

For visitors, it is the best of times as hotel rates room rates continue to fall.

La Prensa reports that January will close with an occupancy of 39% in hotels in the capital city, numbers that have not been seen since 2004.

Armando Rodríguez, president of the Panama Hotel Association (Apatel) said that "we are reaping what we sow", referring to the lack of promotion of recent years.

The downturn has led to the loss of over 6,000 jobs in the hotel and restaurant sector and has sparked an increase in sub-letting of apartments, although in theory rentals must be for a minimum of  45 days.



Comments 4

user
Ramona

There is no urban planning --- or planning of any kind. Want to build a hotel? Does the city look first at the statistical need for another hotel? Well, maybe there are already 3 half occupied hotels within 3 blocks. But then a builder with an extra $100,000 drops it in the right hands, and the permit to build is signed. The same with condos. How many are half un-sold?

28 days ago
user
802MARK

I talked about this problem years ago, yet no one would listen, or say I didn't know what I was talking about. ten years ago,, hummm I have lived here 15 years, and ten years ago hotels were booming, true, you couldn't find a room at any price, once I slept in my car. why was the demand so high? because that was the period that Venezuela elite sold out everything there and moved the entire family here to escape. They booked every room in this country for over a year, flights from there to here were booked solid 6 months in advance. home and car sales, very doing very well. Then the guys with money and no foresight, said hey!!! lets build hotels, the ones here are making money hand over fist, so they did, everyone jumped on the wagon, but by the time they did all the paperwork and permits ect ect ect, and built the place the rush was over, I know of 4 new hotels that are within a block from the Veneto hotel, best hotel in that area and closed. supply far exceeds the demand and now everyone wants to play the blame game, o it's the governments fault for not spending the money to get people to come here. yeah right. first off you let people rent out rooms in their homes, apt condos, air BnB, ect. and you don't enforce that law that says they can't. plus you don't apply that law to the whole country. just the city, well I own a hotel and it has hurt us as well, so we would like that LAW applied all over. You know what the number one killer of tourism is>?>. CRIME. when you have a video the whole world see's of a single guy with a back pack on being attacked in broad day light and fights with this guy to keep his stuff and after the robber runs around the corner with some of his stuff you see a very fit young police officer slowly walk up speak to the man like nothing happen. IT KILLS YOUR TOURISM. two single ladies go back packing up in the hills, and are missing, then one of their feet bones are found in a boot. IT KILLS YOUR TOURISM. when two ladies go hiking up a mountain trail to see a famous land mark in a tourist town and one is beaten very badly, and then raped by 3 men, IT KILLS YOUR TOURISM. Then the very week a guy and his wife go up the same trail and were robbed at gun point. IT KILLS YOUR TOURISM. TOURIST are robbed, cheated, taxi's over charge them, and are targets for all of this. anyone remember a few years ago, when tourist that filled out the paperwork that stated they were carrying X AMOUNT OF CASH, were then robbed during the taxi ride to their hotel? someone inside the airport who could see those reports were tipping off a robbery team waiting. who went to jail for that? anyone??? no one? you see crime kills your tourism. look at carnival. wow, look at rio's floats and dancers, sexy ladies dancing in the streets, people on both sides as far as one can see, enjoying the music and sights. wow.. now compare panama's a bunch of drunks pissing in the streets until they puke and pass out. plus people act like it's time to breed. you understand why they have water tankers spraying water right? to wash the piss smell down. Panama could do so much better. up your game, promote areas that have something to promote to start with. el valle de Anton. El Valle is the world’s second largest intact and un-flooded singular volcanic caldera surpassed only by the Ngorongoro crater in Tanzania, Africa. El Valle also has the distinction of being the earth’s oldest continually occupied volcanic site with a history that reaches back at least 10,000 years. PROMOTE THAT.

29 days ago
user
whiskeytangofoxtrot

So,the previous strategy of raising room rates to compensate for reduced occupancy did not work. Better to closedown every other hotel.

29 days ago
user
whiskeytangofoxtrot

So,the previous strategy of raising room rates to compensate for reduced occupancy did not work. Better to closedown every other hotel.

29 days ago
The comments are the responsibility of each author who freely expresses his opinion and not that of Newsroom Panama.
Please enter a valid email.
Please enter username.
Please, enter a valid message.
Please validate that it is not a robot.