Despite a global economic downturn, the hotel industry continues to experience steady growth. Its ongoing success is due in large part to its ability to adapt to current travel trends while building on its presence in strong tourism markets around the world.
In Spain the tourism industry is presently serving as the backbone to a struggling economy that was brought down by the implosion of the building and credit markets in 2008. However, regardless of the country’s economic woes, during the first 10 months of 2012, 52.1 million tourists visited Spain, up 3.1% from last year. This puts 2012 on target to become the second highest arrival rate ever, behind only 2007's 58 million record. The hotel industry is taking advantage of this growth by offering products tailored to all budgets as well as catering to the luxury markets from growing economies in Russia and China, among others.
On a worldwide scale, according to tophotelprojects.com, by the end of 2012 the hotel industry will have opened 1,270 new hotels. In addition, there are more than 4,500 hotel projects currently under development with more than 1,700 of these emanating from Europe alone. In Spain, hotel operators remain confident and have branched out into niche markets that are underserved while focusing on the luxury tourist sector least affected by the global recession. One good example of this is the recent opening of Mercer Hotel's five star establishment in Barcelona's historic gothic barrio.
Although new hotel openings are sluggish in some of Spain’s most popular tourist destinations, significant growth in key urban areas like Madrid and Barcelona is keeping the growth rate steady at around 2% this year – not bad considering the general negative growth of the Spanish economy as a whole. This year, the total number of hotels in Spain reached nearly 17,000 establishments while employing some 250,000 people around the country (INE, August 2012). Meanwhile, notable openings this year include the Radisson Blu Gran Canaria Resort, the Renaissance Barcelona, and the Port Soller Hotel & Spa Mallorca.
From our standpoint in Les Roches Marbella, we have seen demand for hotel professionals continue to climb upward throughout the year and in accordance with global industry growth. Although many of the most attractive positions are offered abroad, there is still great potential to acquire challenging career opportunities right here in Spain. As a result, we are proud to state that the school’s placement rate is in excess of 85% upon graduation from our different undergraduate and postgraduate programs in Hotel Management, Golf Management, Hospitality Management, Event Management, Resort Management and Entrepreneur & SME Management.
We are ready to meet the demand for hospitality professionals around the world by preparing our students to enter the international hospitality industry with a level of academic and professional experience that is second to none. With professionals like those we train at Les Roches Marbella running hotels around the world, we are sure the industry will continue to experience positive growth for years to come.