Guest numbers recover

While guest nights in Marlborough continue to rise, Marlborough Motel Association president Noel Noble says they are still not where they were before the Christchurch earthquakes.

The latest figures released by Statistics New Zealand showed guest nights in the region totalled 65,483 in April this year compared with 57,427 in April 2013.

Noble, who owns Aston Motel in Blenheim, said while most motels had a great summer they still had not reached pre-earthquake guest nights. "Overall, [guest nights] increased about 10 per cent over summer, that's from my experience and those that I have talked to. Everyone was reasonably happy with summer, but we are not back to pre-earthquake numbers. They are really only recovering increases."

Motels guest nights increased by 4301, from 22,123 in April last year compared with 26,424 this year. Backpacker guest nights were also up by 5257. Hotel guest nights increased from 8539 to 8850.

Holiday parks were the only accommodation provider to experience a decrease in guest nights. There were 15,048 in April 2013 compared with 13,235 in April this year.

The figures also showed a decrease in the number of motels, backpackers and holiday parks from from 106 to 103 but Statistics NZ analyst John Gudgeon said this did not mean they had closed down. He said the decrease could mean a reclassification, for example a motel was operating more like a hotel.

There was no change in the number of hotels in the region.

Domestic guest nights rose from 32,156 in April last year to 37,926 in April 2014. International guest nights also rose from 25,271 to 27,557.

The Marlborough Express