The Real Deal New York

Brooklyn hotel boom may exceed demand

City’s hotel count increased 21 percent in past five years

July 22, 2015 06:00PM

Rendering of 55 Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg (Credit: Albo Liberis)

Rendering of 55 Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg (Credit: Albo Liberis)

If you build a hotel in Brooklyn, will they come? A record number of hotel properties planned in Kings County are stirring concerns there may not be enough demand to fill them all.

At least 32 such properties are in the works from Williamsburg to Bushwick, with developers looking to capitalize on Brooklyn’s increasing viability as a trendy destination, according to Bloomberg News. But with supply also surging in Manhattan, some are worried Brooklyn hotel developments may face declining occupancy and depressed rates as projects open in the next few years.

The city’s hotel count has already increased 21 percent in the past five years, according to hotel industry research firm STR.

The average hotel occupancy rate in Brooklyn fell 1 percent in the first five months to 76.8 percent, while average room rates slipped almost 3 percent to $155.71 per night, according to STR. In Manhattan, occupancies dropped to 82.4 percent, down from 83.8 percent, while rates declined 3.3 percent to $255.60 per night.

“If you are a stand-alone, unaffiliated hotel, I am doubtful of your success,” Bruce Ford, a senior vice president at research firm Lodging Econometrics said. “It’s important to not confuse Brooklyn with Times Square.”

Developer Richard Born agreed that the emergence of dozens of hotels is “crazy” and “a bit scary,” but said he felt confident his 250-room Pod Hotel in Williamsburg would find success as an alternative to chains. [Bloomberg News]Rey Mashayekhi