Soaring demand for hotel accommodation in Century City in recent years has increased the average annual occupancy to 73% necessitating additional hotel rooms be brought on stream, says Greg Deans, a director of Rabie Property Group, the developers of Century City.
He said since the post World Cup 2010 hospitality hangover all five Century City hotels, which have a total of more than 460 rooms, had shown strong annual growth in occupancies. Occupancies were currently running at about 7% ahead of the previous year which in itself had been a high base.
“Century City’s popularity as a hospitality node has grown phenomenally in recent years in tandem with the growth of the precinct which is now home to more than 500 businesses and is currently the third largest commercial precinct in Cape Town, with a total office component of more than 260 000 square metres.”
He pointed out that the Cape Town CBD with an office component of around 900 000 square metres is serviced by 5720 four and five star hotel rooms – a ratio of one room to every 157 square metres of offices – and this did not take into account the large number of three-star hotel rooms in the city.
“At Century City, on the other hand, the total number of hotel rooms from three to five star, represents a ratio of just one to 560 square metres of offices which indicates just how under serviced in terms of hotels we are for the corporate sector in particular. The node is still growing with a further 80 000 square metres of offices already in the planning stages or under construction. This space is due to come on stream before 2015 which will further exacerbate the shortage. ”
Deans said the growing demand for hotel rooms had been matched by a demand for conference and meeting facilities, and hotels in the precinct had been unable to keep up with this burgeoning demand.
“Planning to bring on additional conference facilities to satisfy the market is well underway and we expect to be able to announce details within the next few months,” he said.
Deans said that while Century City’s popularity as a hospitality zone had initially been primarily in the corporate sector, the demand from the leisure market had recently picked up and all indications were that further growth in this sector could be anticipated.
“Many of the same factors driving the relocation of businesses and business travellers to Century City are shared by the leisure market. The centrality of the location puts it in easy drive distance of most of the region’s major other attractions while the high level of safety and security on offer in the precinct as well its wide array of world class leisure attractions such as Canal Walk, Intaka Island and a myriad of restaurants right on its doorstep are just a few.”