Festive spending cheers leisure industry
Tuesday 13 January 1998
John Jarvis, chairman and chief executive of Jarvis Hotels, said: "Unlike some of the apparent high street retail experience, our customers seemed to determined to enjoy the holiday season."
The group has enjoyed bumper bookings due to the trend for firms which have had to cap wage rises instead rewarding employees with Christmas parties. There is also evidence of strong growth in the short break market, with more people going away for the festive period, especially between Boxing Day and the New Year.
Themed breaks such as walking holidays and murder mystery weekends are proving extremely popular as more Britons eschew a traditional family Christmas.
Jarvis is also close to making its first big acquisition after announcing it had a pounds 100m war chest at its disposal on unveiling its interim results in November.
"A deal is imminent. We are close to buying a major hotel with health and fitness centre in a big city. It will be the first of many acquisitions," said Mr Jarvis.
The good news is not confined to the hotel sector. Old English Pub Company, the pub and coaching inn operator, added to the good news, revealing that trading was buoyant in December, with like-for-like sales rising by 8.1 per cent thanks to a sharp rise in food sales. It had planned to sell 5,000 Christmas Day lunches but ended up selling more than a thousand extra.
Freeport Leisure, which runs factory outlets and leisure villages, also had a storming Christmas. "It has been an excellent Christmas, with all our sites performing strongly," said Sean Collidge, the group's chief executive.
Analysts believe that further evidence of Christmas strong trading in the pub and hotel industries should emerge later this week with Whitbread announcing a trading statement on Wednesday. The market will also be watching closely for comments from Thistle, the troubled hotel group which recently lost long-standing chief executive Robert Peel and is in need of a decent set of trading figures to calm investors' nerves. Diageo, the Grand Metropolitan and Guinness combine, could also give an update on sales and how the Far East financial turmoil has hit profits.
- Andrew Yates
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Isis publicly behead man in Syrian town square for 'insulting Allah' as he screams for help
One spelling error costs Companies House up to £9 million after being sued for ruining business
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
iJobs Money & Business
£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...
£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Technical Report Writer is re...
Competitive salary & benefits!: MBDA UK Ltd: MBDA UK LTD Indirect Procurement...