Cheaper stays in Western Australia as glut of hotels results in price cuts
SINGAPORE, Sept 28 — There is no better time than now to visit Western Australia. For one, five-star hotel accommodation now costs about 25 per cent less, according to the Western Australian Tourism Minister Paul Papalia.
Recent figures from the government of Western Australia revealed that the average prices of rooms in four- and five-star hotels have fallen to A$169 (RM560) per night, down from A$222 in 2012.
Papalia attributes the fall in prices to the spike in supply — more than 20 new or redeveloped hotels have opened in recent years, creating an estimated 1,800 rooms. In the next four years, 16 more hotels will open, adding 2,800 new rooms.
“During the construction and mining boom, there were a lot of business travellers coming in, which overwhelmed accommodation capacity. In response to that, there was a move to build capacity by the private sector.
“The building response has come to the market (at) the same time there has been a downturn in demand. What we have now is a glut of very high-quality hotels. The downward pressure on price is not great for the hotel industry, but wonderful if you’re a traveller,” Papalia said while on a recent trip to Singapore.
It helps too, that the Western Australian government is also on a push to boost tourism in Perth and the surrounding areas.
According to the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority in Perth, the state government “committed A$440 million for the development of public infrastructure” at Elizabeth Quay, which opened last year.
The new waterfront precinct connects Perth’s central business district to the areas around Swan River. The development has since seen a burgeoning gastronomic culture with a boom in bars, cafes and restaurants. A few of the culinary tenants include Ku De Ta, award-winning seafront cafe Odyssea and the acclaimed Shadow Wine Bar and Dining Room.
Sports tourism is also getting a boost: The new 60,000-seat Perth Stadium, where Chelsea Football Club will play a match in the third quarter of next year, is due to open next March.
In addition, the State Government has sponsored Perth’s biggest annual horse racing festival, the Tabtouch Masters Series, which is happening this November.
Singapore, Papalia noted, is a key market for Western Australia tourism. In 2016, the number of visitors from Singapore to the Australian state surpassed 100,000 for the first time. In the 12 months to March 2017, there was a 17 per cent year-on-year increase.
“Perth remains the gateway to Australia from Singapore. Now more than ever, there is so much to see and do in the regions,” he said, adding that trips to Penguin Island and Margaret River are must-see attractions around Perth.
“And of course, all the things Singaporeans have traditionally loved about Western Australia still exist — the fresh air, blue skies, sunshine, fresh produce and access to beaches, wineries and native wildlife, all within an hour of the city centre,” added Papalia. ― TODAY