October 12, 2022 | By Bronwen Largier

South Australia’s capital achieved its highest ever hotel occupancy last month, cracking 9,000 rooms with guests installed for the first time on World Tourism Day on September 27.

In that week, the AFL Masters Carnival, World Indigenous Peoples Conference on Education (WIPCE) 2022 and a second large conference at Adelaide Convention Centre brought 5,000 people into Adelaide’s CBD.

Breaking the 9,000 occupied rooms barrier occurred just a week after the previous highest hotel occupancy record was set at 8,967 rooms occupied on one night. Nightly occupancy was also at its highest since the pandemic started that week, at 91 per cent.

The only reason why hotel occupancy in Adelaide is not already topping pre-COVID numbers is the influx of new hotel stock in Adelaide during the course of the pandemic, including the openings of Sofitel Adelaide, Eos by SkyCity, Crowne Plaza Adelaide and Hotel Indigo Adelaide.

In the last week of September hotel occupancy averaged 84 per cent – the best result since the start of the pandemic.

“To reach Adelaide’s highest-ever room nights occupied as we recover from the impacts of the pandemic is a remarkable achievement,” said South Australia’s tourism minister Zoe Bettison.

“Just when we thought we reached a new record in one week last month, we topped it even higher the following week – filling more than 9,000 hotel rooms in one night.

“This incredible start to spring also comes on the back of several luxury hotels opening during the pandemic meaning we have more hotel rooms available than ever before – and more people wanting to fill them!

“It’s an excellent result for Adelaide’s economic recovery and no doubt comes as music to the ears of developers, with more hotels pegged to open in our CBD in the coming year.”

Adelaide Convention Centre general manager Martin Radcliffe said the venue was on track to deliver a record year of business during the current financial year.

“We’ve been working hard over the past two years, in conjunction with Business Events Adelaide, to ensure we have an incredibly healthy pipeline of business events coming through Adelaide Convention Centre to support industry sectors that have been doing it tough throughout the pandemic.

“Our focus has been on enticing business event clients to Adelaide, thus providing local businesses with every opportunity to recover as quickly as possible.

“Based on forward bookings, 2023-24 promises to be equally strong,” said Radcliffe.

“It’s pleasing that this hard work is bearing fruit.