The audit, hailed as the most comprehensive analysis of Edinburgh’s visitor accommodation provision ever undertaken, shows that the city hosts 12,910 bedrooms in 529 establishments in the serviced accommodation sector (hotels and related types) and 7,353 bedrooms in the non-serviced sector (self-catering, apartments, hostels etc) throughout the year.
The audit also shows that the number of additional rooms available during the Festival period has increased substantially, rising from 20,437 to 27,504, with the biggest growth coming from the campus, self-catering and hostel sectors. This allows the city to accommodate over 50,000 visitors per night during August.
Compared with the previous audit carried out in 2006, Edinburgh has seen growth across all accommodation types, providing an additional 6,422 rooms in total. The single largest growth area has been seen in the non-serviced stock, with the serviced apartment sector showing the biggest increase, from 630 to 2,019 rooms, an increase of 220%.
The report also identifies that there are currently 765 new hotel bedrooms under construction and which are due to open in 2012/13.
The audit highlighted a number of key issues, such as the need for the city to maintain a balanced accommodation portfolio to meet the demands of both the leisure and business markets and ongoing concerns about the perceived high cost of accommodation in Edinburgh, particularly during peak seasons such as the August Festival period and Hogmanay.
These issues will have to be addressed in order to keep in line with the goals of the National Tourism Strategy for Scotland but the outlook for Edinburgh is positive and with continued and growing tourism to the area, visitors will be encouraged to explore Scotland’s other treasures, resulting in a healthy and growing hospitality industry nationally.