It’s only a matter of time, folks.
The cost of jet fuel is causing air carriers to raise ticket prices to the point that the average family can no longer afford that trip to Disney World, or if they can, they certainly can’t afford to stay at the Contemporary Resort.
Likewise for the business customer, the rising cost of prices on the hourly shuttles between Washington and Boston may stretch travel budgets to the point that staying at the newly-opened Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel is out of reach.
Ritz-Carlton Hotels have seven domestic and 15 additional international properties in the works. Maybe people who stay in Ritz-Carltons are immune to the crunch you and I are facing, but how many pseudo rich folks are left after all of those sub-prime pigeons have come home to roost?
W Hotels, a funky arm of the Starwood family of properties, have quite a few new hotels on the horizon. On a personal note, I stayed at the new property in Mid-town Atlanta shortly after it opened earlier this year, and to say there were a few kinks that needed working out is an understatement. It was so bad, my stay was free, so I guess I can’t get too worked up.
At some point, this bubble has to burst.
The sour economy will eventually, I fear, catch up with the hotel industry. I have visions of empty hotels scattered across once-desirable parts of major cities.
Or, the folks at Motel 6 might make out like bandits, removing the signature clock from the lobby of the new Waldorf-Astoria in Orlando and replacing it with vending machines that dispense that quintessential Southern favorite dinner-on-the-go, MoonPies and RC Cola.