The Real Deal Miami

South Florida hotels near full occupancy in March

April 24, 2013 02:00PM

The Betsy South Beach

South Florida hotels enjoyed a spike in occupancy rates in March compared to a year ago, according to the Miami Herald, citing Smith Travel Research’s recently released figures.

Hotels were 89.1 percent full in Miami-Dade, a jump of more than 4 percent from a year ago. Rates soared 14.4 percent to $238.12. Reviewing records as far back as 2005, no other month has come close, according to the Herald.

Hotels in Palm Beach County ran 86.5 percent full, with an average daily rate of $208.93, the report showed. That’s up from 85 percent and $192.25 in March 2012.

Broward County hotels achieved 88.4 percent occupancy last month, a 4.2 percent gain over March 2012, while guests paid an average $153.34 per room, up 8.6 percent from last year.

Jeff Lehman, general manager of The Betsy, a boutique hotel in South Beach, credited “unprecedented” occupancy rates to “a perfect storm” of gorgeous weather, a string of holidays and major events, including Miami Beach’s Winter Music Conference.

“The rest of the country was suffering through horrible weather and South Florida’s weather was just perfect,” Lehman told the Herald. [The Miami Herald]Emily Schmall