Summer Starts Strong for Western Mountain Destinations

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SAM Magazine—Denver, June 18, 2013—Warm temperatures and good economic news are nudging western mountain destinations toward a record-breaking summer for lodging properties, based on the latest data from DestiMetrics, (formerly called the Mountain Travel Research Program).

Occupancy during May achieved a year-over-year 14.6 percent increase, along with a sharp 16.6 percent increase in revenue for the same time period. The boost in occupancy was a reassuring rebound from April’s 3.9 percent decline in occupancy, which largely reflected the shift of the Easter holiday to March this year.

The trend for June is also positive, with reservations as of May 31 5.7 percent compared to a year ago, with revenue ticking up 10.6 percent. The next six months, June through November, are currently showing a 6.7 percent increase in occupancy.

Data for the DestiMetrics report come from 260 property management companies in 17 mountain destination communities, representing 24,000 rooms across Colorado, Utah, California, Nevada, and Oregon.

“The twin wildcards of economy and weather are working in our favor at this early stage of the summer season,” said Ralf Garrison, DestiMetrics director. “Forecasts for a hot, dry summer provide an inducement for city dwellers to make a trip to the cooler mountains, while mountain resorts have continued to expand and enhance their lineup of special events and activities, making these ‘ski’ resorts increasingly appealing in the summer.”

Garrison also noted that the stock market and Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) have been posting gains, suggesting consumers have the money to travel.