Two reports being delivered Tuesday to the Oklahoma City Council advise that the city can support construction of a 735-room conference hotel as part of development of a new convention center.
Texas consultant Jeremy Stone's study, compiled though visits with local hoteliers and analysis of local hospitality data, reports five full-service, “competitive” hotels enjoyed average room occupancy of 75.6 percent, with an average daily room rate of $129 in 2012.
After consideration of additional limited-service hotels being built or planned in Bricktown and Deep Deuce, Stone's report concludes that a new conference hotel, if it opened with the new convention center in 2019, would hit 56 percent occupancy that first year, jump to 64 percent the next year, and average out at 66 percent occupancy in 2022.
“While we opine that the market will inevitably perform at levels exceeding 64.2 percent in some years, it will also likely decline in some years,” Stone wrote in his report.
Voters in 2009 approved funding for the $252 million new convention center as part of MAPS 3. Design is underway for the project, which will be built south of the Myriad Gardens between Robinson and Hudson Avenues and will include 160,000 square feet of exhibit hall space, 40,000 square feet of meeting rooms, and ballrooms spanning 35,000 square feet.
Stone's study reports the city lost at least 100 conventions and events due to a lack of rooms since 2009.
Mike Carrier, president of the Oklahoma City Convention and Visitors Bureau, has previously told The Oklahoman that the hotels being built now — most with fewer than 200 rooms each — don't meet the needs of meeting planners.
The report by Stone does not delve into how much the new hotel might cost, but a separate report authored by Robert Evans and Kyle Dean, research economists at Oklahoma City University, suggests the cost will likely be “just under” $200 million.