STR’s latest census shows 5,001,163 rooms in 53,554 properties nationwide. In the 88 months following February of 2008—the month in which the industry plateaued at 4.5 million rooms—the U.S. census grew by more than 5,600 rooms per month.
The industry’s quickest period of room growth (for 500,000 rooms) came between April 1994 and March 1999, when the U.S. census increased from 3.5 million to 4.0 million.
“The hotel industry is a sector of real estate that continues to attract investors,” said Amanda Hite, STR’s president and COO. “The rate of growth in the industry reflects the continued interest in the sector and its ability to generate return. RevPAR (revenue per available room) in the U.S. has grown year-over-year for 64 consecutive months. With more of the same in the forecast, we expect growth in the industry to continue.”
The U.S. census reached 3.0 million rooms in June 1987 and 4.0 million rooms in March 1999.