Record year for AlmaVerde... And a creditable year for Portugal!

A record year so far for AlmaVerde…
and a creditable year for Portugal!

At the beginning of 2009, as a consequence of the financial crisis and the fall of the pound, Portuguese tourism industry experts were predicting a fall of as much as 30% in occupancy rates and revenues for the year. This pessimism was no doubt behind the unfortunate decision of the car rental companies not to go ahead with the normal replacement orders for older cars that were sold off after last summer’s season.

However, earlier this month Bernardo Trinidade, the State Secretary for Tourism, announced that Portugal had reason to be pleased at the manner in which the tourism industry performed this far in the year: “Information we have for August 2009 points to occupancy rates of well above 90 percent in the Algarve, with strong domestic support boosting figures.” And this, despite the difficulty and expense of renting a car!

In fact, the August occupancy rates for the Algarve were exactly the same as those recorded in the same period of 2008, the best year for tourism in Portugal on record. However, figures for earlier months and possibly other regions were not quite as strong. The State Secretary concluded that “Although this has not been the best year for tourism, what 2009 is showing is that, despite the crisis, it is in fact the third best year.” He predicted that the overall drop compared to 2008 would be limited to a single-digit drop in figures. The INE statistics for the year to end-July actually show only a country-wide 2.7% drop in revenues compared to 2008.

At AlmaVerde, 2009 has so far been a record year. Due to the fast pace of new villa completions over the past two years, available nights in villas managed by AlmaVerde were up 18% for the first nine months of 2009, compared to the same period in 2008, while total nights occupied were up 28%.

Guest satisfaction was also higher than last year. With large sections of the village now fully built out, AlmaVerde now has a much more mature feel, and the very low level of ongoing construction taking place in the high season contributed to a very positive guest experience. AlmaVerde hospitality staff were also praised for their efficiency and responsiveness.

With the completion of the reception building and the racquets pavilion, and with 50% plus of villa rentals now being managed by AlmaVerde, we fully expect to be able to report further significant improvements on these figures for 2010.


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