Spotlight: Top U.S. hotel markets and their activity at the end of Q1 2021

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According to the latest hotel development intelligence from Lodging Econometrics (LE), the U.S. hotel construction pipeline stands at 4,967 projects/622,218 rooms at the end of Q1 2021. Thirty-four percent of the projects in the hotel construction pipeline in the U.S. are in the Top 25 markets.

At the end of Q1 ’21, the following ten markets, excluding Las Vegas, have the largest open and operating census counts by rooms: Orlando, Chicago, New York, Washington DC, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Phoenix and San Diego. In this article, we will focus on these 10 markets. These markets also have some of the largest construction pipelines by project and room counts. New York City and Los Angeles lead with 145 projects/24,762 rooms and 144 projects/23,994 rooms, respectively. This is followed by Dallas with 135 projects/16,620 rooms and Atlanta with 132 projects/18,264 rooms. Orlando has 98 projects/17,536 rooms; Houston with 93 projects/9,970 rooms; Phoenix with 86 projects/10,695 rooms; Washington DC with 70 projects/10,792 rooms; Chicago with 69 projects/8,601 rooms; and San Diego with 38 projects/8,460 rooms.

In Q1 ’21, these markets opened 6,450 rooms. Atlanta opened the most rooms with 1,228. This was followed by Orlando with 1,097 rooms, Houston with 1,045 rooms, Dallas with 765, and Phoenix with 712 rooms. LE is forecasting another 20,325 rooms to open in these markets by the end of 2021. New York is anticipated to open the most rooms by year-end with 8,254, followed by Los Angeles with 2,266 rooms and Orlando with 2,216 rooms.

These markets are also hot spots for much renovation and conversion activity within the U.S. Nationwide, at the end of Q1 ’21, there were 1,198 projects/190,475 rooms undergoing a renovation or conversion in the U.S. Five hundred and ninety-eight projects/65,003 rooms are conversions, and 600 projects/125,472 rooms are renovations. These 10 markets account for almost 23% of the renovation and conversion room activity in the U.S. Houston leads with the most renovation and conversion activity with 27 projects/4,314 rooms. This is followed by New York with 22 projects/6,080 rooms, then Los Angeles with 22 projects/3,104 rooms. Chicago is next with 21 projects/3,113 rooms, then Phoenix with 18 projects/4,669 rooms and Washington DC with 18 projects/4,331 rooms.

As it relates to conversions in the U.S., LE’s research has found that for the quarter ending Q1 ’21, there are 174 hotels/18,937 rooms that were once unbranded but will now be converting to a brand. Many of these unbranded hotels will move into the upscale, upper midscale, midscale or economy chain scales. There are also another 135 branded open hotels that will convert to a higher chain scale brand and 79 branded hotels that will convert to a lower chain scale. Two hundred eight branded hotels will convert to another brand within the same chain scale.

Lodging Econometrics (LE) can provide a comprehensive look into any market in the U.S. or any market around the world. LE has the most accurate and comprehensive intelligence on the hotel construction pipeline by stage, new project announcements, announced renovations, brand conversions, open and operating hotels, recent sales transactions, and more. For more information, please contact LE: (603) 431.8740, ext. 0025 or


JP Ford, ISHC, SVP, Director of Global Business Development, Lodging Econometrics

Bruce Ford, SVP, Director of Global Business Development, Lodging Econometrics

Tom O’Gorman, Vice President of Sales, Lodging Econometrics

April Bedell, Sales Account Executive, Lodging Econometrics

Carlos Quiñones, Account Manager, Lodging Econometrics