Hotels: Great rates but where’s the traffic?
Five-star hotels in Colombo charged over US$500 per night net for delegates attending this week’s Commonwealth Summit in Sri Lanka, more than three times the standard room rate, but still ended on the losing side.
One hotel lost as much as Rs.100 million due to occupancy being less than 20 per cent compared to 70-80 per cent during this period. Others had lower than that partly due to some delegations arriving with reduced numbers.
Prescribed hotel rates decided by the government for delegates attending the summit were: 5 star – $571 net, 4 star – $431, 3 star – $343, 2 star – $273 net and 1 star – $159 net.
“The rates were based on hotel rates prevalent during the previous Commonwealth summits in Perth and Trinidad, and also to compensate for lost business at the 5-star hotels,” one official involved in the accommodation arrangements for delegates said.
Up to 4,000 rooms in 33 hotels had been booked for the conference but that figure fell to 2,000-2,500 rooms.
The 5-star – Hilton Colombo, Cinnamon Grand Colombo, Cinnamon Lakeside, Taj Samudra Colombo, Galadari Hotel and Kingsbury Hotel were open only for conference delegates and were unable to provide food and beverage or open restaurants to non-resident clients, or offer rooms to non-conference delegates