BC's hotel industry might be finally coming alive again after its most brutal year ever with at least 2 major hotels planned, one in Richmond, and one in Coquitlam.
COVID-19 has proven to be far worse than the 2008/2009 global financial crisis, SARS outbreak in 2003, 9/11 and the Gulf War combined, where two thirds of total hotel rooms across Canada sat empty in 2020.
The hotel occupancy rate in BC has fallen to the 30% range, the lowest ever recorded and the revenue per available room, a key industry metric, has plunged 60% from pre-pandemic levels.
Virtually the only BC hotel properties transacted in the past 12 months have been those bought by government to house the homeless and others in need of emergency housing.
Yet, experts are expecting a robust rebound in the hotel industry post-pandemic.
On June 7, Landa Global Properties announced it plans a major hotel as a keystone of a giant mixed-use developement on a 3.5 acre site near Richmond's Oval Village waterfront.
The concept is for a 3 tower developement that will include the hotel, retail and residentail homes, with an elaborate clubhouse amenity for hotel guests and residents, with design elements influenced by high-end Asain hotels.
Meanwhile there are also plans for a 150 room hotel, comparable to the Hilton or Marriot, as part of a mixed-ue proposal in Coquitlam Town Centre on Pinetree Way and Lougheed Highway.
If all goes well, both hotels could be open in 2023 or 2024, which will be the first full years of stabilzed demand post-COVID with occupancies approaching pre-pandemic levels.