Season of giving?

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal has a front page (personal section) article with a headline that screams “Hotel Rates Soar Over the Holidays”. The opening line (salvo) gives more than an indication of the author’s leanings – “While this is the season of giving, higher-end hotels aren’t giving travelers a break from rising rates”. Any amount of trawling the net is unlikely to turn up an article of charity towards hotels in the extreme economic conditions lthat prevailed post 9/11 or in the run up to the Iraq war circa March 2003 – so what sense does it make for hotels to be giving all travelers a “break”? Obviously, hotels live through economic cycles that some times are real busts as in the recent past. And yet the evidently economically illiterate reporter of the Wall Street Journal reports it as a “trend of ever-increasing room prices, which began in 2004, is continuing through the holiday season”.

With a significant development pipeline combined with the natural ebb and flow of the economy the odds of this robust aspect of the economic cycle enduring for “ever” are about as great as finding the Lochness monster.

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Vijay Dandapani

Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017.

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