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Small independents hit hardest
Bankruptcies among hotels in the UK were nearly 200% up for the first quarter compared with the same period in 2008.
New insolvency figures from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) showed that small stand alone hotels were those hit the hardest.
It said there were only a few hotel companies which had become insolvent.
But the consultants said that the rate of insolvency was slowing.
The number of bankruptcies from Q4 in 2008 compared with Q1 2009 had increased by 20% while there had been a 100% increase in Q4 2008 compared with Q3.
But PwC said that hoteliers were still in for a rough ride in 2009.
Stephen Broome, a PwC director, said: "Many hotel groups have seen the benefit of December trading which, despite the downturn, will still have provided some Christmas cheer.
"With the quieter months of January and February now a distant memory many UK hotels are hopeful of survival through to the summer when all revenues are pinned on the revival of demand from domestic holiday visitors."
PwC said London hotels had performed as expected and in line with its prediction of a 14.2% drop in room rates forecast last month.
It added that UK regional hotel room rates had fallen more dramatically than was expected by 11.9% compared with a forecast of 8.7 per cent.
This is thought to be the result of a reduction in corporate demand being substituted by lower rate leisure business. "Given the slow and rocky recovery ahead we therefore expect to see further room rate declines in both London and regional hotels through until autumn at least.
"Discounts will not drive additional demand, and are unlikely to persuade those who aren't planning to travel to leave their homes, or indeed their caravans, but it will help attract those who are," Mr Broome said.