PATTAYA is on track to receive a record eight million hotel guests in 2012 – the highest figure for any resort destination in Thailand.
According to the latest ‘Pattaya Hotel Market Update’ by C9 Hotelworks, Pattaya posted a nine per cent surge in hotel occupancy last year, while the occupancy rate for chain properties in the destination reached 74 per cent – eight per cent more than non-branded hotel inventory.
The sharp upturn was driven by a mix of growing domestic demand and improved access and transport infrastructure, explained Bill Barnett, C9 Hotelworks’ managing director.
He said: “With the geographic shift away from longhaul tourists to the Asian and domestic segments, key demand generators such as large-scale retail, tourist attractions and a rising residential resort market have fuelled positive sentiment.”
Thailand, Russia and China were the top source markets for Pattaya in 2011, with a combined share of 59 per cent. Passenger arrivals at U-Tapao International Airport rose 39 per cent in 2011, an increase for the second consecutive year.
When compared to other Thai destinations such as Phuket, Chiang Mai and Koh Samui, Pattaya “has less pronounced seasonality which results in mitigating volatility,” Barnett noted.
Looking forward, C9 Hotelworks pointed out that major investments in tourist attractions and branded theme parks in the Greater Pattaya area would help to broaden market demographics.