Finally heaven in 2011? That's what Jim Burba, president of BHN, asked at the opening of the Americas Lodging Investment Summit (ALIS) in San Diego this week. And it seemed from various esteemed panelists' remarks and the positive vibe from the attendees, that just may be the case. Here are some of the highlights from the event:
–"We are on the road to recovery, but not to where we were before the recession. We have repair to do, but there will be better news ahead. Emerging countries [China, India, Brazil] are outperforming the developed. Big size has caught up to big growth. Cash is moving. Inflation is still low for now. Interest rates will go up. Those that focus on familiarity, they may follow a loosing streak for the next decade," said Warren Jestin, senior vice president & chief economist, Scotiabank Group.
–"[In the U.S.], we are seeing the strongest demand rebound ever, at 7.8 percent. Enjoy it while it lasts. The upper end is leading the recovery with double digit demand increase, limited supply, and increased occupancy," said Jan Frietag, vice president, STR.
–"[Our industry] is getting better, quicker. Severe rate discounting set the stage for a record decline and a quicker turnaround. We will be bigger and better in 2011—more transactions, plenty of dept and equity capitol, more liquidity, low rates, but there is still plenty of uncertainty. RevPAR peaks will be back in 2013 and 2014," said Mark Woodworth, president, Colliers PKF Hospitality Research.