UK RevPAR was up 2% during the period, with London up 5% and the provinces up 1%. Second quarter RevPAR in the UK also increased by 2% with “strong” international demand driving RevPAR in London up 4%, whilst the provinces were up 1%, benefitting from the Cricket World Cup.
However, this was offset by a 0.3% decrease in RevPAR in China which was impacted by the “strong comparables” from H1 2018, and flat RevPAR growth in the US – with occupancy impacted by tough comparables from hurricane related demand in H1 2018.
The hotel reported a 2% increase in total gross revenue to $13.6bn (£11.1bn), with operating profit also up 2% during the period. The hotel brand also signed 48,000 rooms (up 3% year-on-year), the highest in over a decade, and its total pipeline now stands at 282,000 rooms.
Keith Barr, chief executive officer, IHG, said: “18 months ago, we set out a series of strategic initiatives to drive an acceleration in growth to ambitious new levels. Our approach is built around strengthening our established brands, adding new brands in high opportunity segments and optimising our owner proposition.
“In a slower RevPAR growth environment, we’ve made significant progress, opening a record number of rooms in the first half which have delivered a 5.7% increase in net system size growth, our best performance in over a decade, with future growth underpinned by our highest level of signings over the same period.”