China’s Hotel Construction Pipeline reaches all time high, says LE

According to the latest China Construction Pipeline Trend Report from Lodging Econometrics (LE), China’s total hotel construction pipeline reached a new all-time high by projects for the second quarter in a row at Q4 2023. With a 6% year-over-year (YOY) increase in projects and a 2% YOY increase in rooms, the country’s total pipeline ended the year at 3,788 projects with 691,772 rooms.

Projects currently under construction encompasses an impressive 2,644 projects/473,921 rooms, reflecting a 1% increase by projects YOY, while projects scheduled to start construction in the next 12 months are up 4% YOY and stand at 420 projects/74,067 rooms. Notably, projects in the early planning stage experienced a remarkable surge, achieving record-high counts in Q4. This stage witnessed a 30% YOY rise in projects and a 16% YOY increase in rooms, to close the quarter at 724 projects/143,784 rooms. The region also saw an impressive 77% YOY uptick in new project announcements (NPAs), culminating in 308 new projects/47,885 rooms at the end of Q4. These statistics collectively reflect a vibrant and expanding hotel construction landscape in China.

Upscale and upper midscale projects dominate China’s hotel construction pipeline at Q4, claiming more than 50% of the total projects and rooms in the country’s pipeline, reaching unprecedented highs in both project and rooms counts. The upscale segment increased 13% YOY by projects and 7% YOY by rooms to stand at 879 projects/202,831 rooms. Similarly, the upper midscale segment maintained its prominence with 1,253 projects/197,122 rooms, a 12% YOY increase in projects and 7% YOY increase in rooms.

Chengdu leads China’s hotel construction pipeline with the greatest number of projects at Q4 with 148 projects/29,575 rooms. Next is Shanghai with 121 projects/23,148 rooms, followed by Guangzhou with 110 projects/22,938 rooms, then Hangzhou with 96 projects/19,945 rooms, and Xi’an with 88 projects/15,565 rooms.

In 2023, China opened 683 new hotels/106,463 rooms. In the years ahead, LE analysts expect new hotel openings to continue to grow, mostly fueled by the influx of new projects into the early planning stage. Throughout 2024, LE forecasts 871 new hotels/140,116 rooms will open, and 955 new hotels/161,162 rooms to open in 2025.

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