Canberra is a regional hotspot in Australian tourism, presenting an exciting opportunity for savvy investors.
The National Arboretum Canberra, Stromlo Forest Park and Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve are considered key regional sites in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). Located in close proximity to Canberra CBD, these three areas offer visitors world-class natural and recreational experiences.
Visitation to Canberra is currently at the highest level ever recorded with 5.4 million visitors to the region in 2019, following consecutive years of growth since 2010 and with a high proportion of domestic day trippers. Growth in overnight stays has been strong, increasing at an average rate of 5.2% per annum over a five-year period. The domestic segment contributes the largest proportion of overnight stays and has also recorded strong growth over the past five years.
Canberra Tourism Growth 2015 - 2019:
All visitation - 6.1%
International visitation - 9.7%
Domestic visitation - 6.4%
Overnight stays - 5.2%
Canberra Airport is the eighth busiest in Australia with daily flights to Canberra from Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Newcastle and Perth. In 2017/18 passenger movements through the airport recorded growth of 6.1% year-on-year. Historically the Airport has only catered for domestic traffic, but from 2016 Singapore Airlines commenced a direct service operating Canberra to Singapore and Canberra to Wellington and Qatar Airlines commenced flights in 2018.
A range of accommodation can be found in Canberra with the most significant being hotels and holiday letting which together account for 63% of all visitor nights spent in Canberra. Over the past year, the Canberra Tourism Regions’ accommodation market has recorded revenue per available room (RevPAR) growth averaging 2.5% per annum. Higher occupancy levels have been the primary driver of growth and having averaged 78.0% in 2018 - the highest level ever recorded in Canberra.
Canberra Tourism Region: Historical HMSA Trading Performance FY13 to FY18
|FY14||70.8% (-2.2%)||$162.3 (-4.3%)||$114.9 (6.4%)|
|FY15||73.6% (4%)||$164.2 (1.2%)||$120.8 (5.2%)|
|FY16||74.5% (1.2%)||$166.2 (1.2%)||$123.8 (2.4%)|
|FY17||76.9% (3.2%)||$174.4 (4.9%)||$134.1 (8.3%)|
|FY18||78.9% (2.6%)||$176.1 (1.0%)||$138.9 (3.6%)|
Only one hotel in Canberra transacted in 2018 with the sale of Novotel Canberra to AXA Investment Fund, as part of the TAHL portfolio. A number of hotels are being marketed for sale in 2019 including Mantra on Northbourne and a portfolio of three Abode hotels in Gungahlin, Tuggeranong and Kingston. The offering of these assets will test investor appetite for hotels located outside of the CBD and Parliamentary precincts.