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Gaming Guru

Laura Carroll
 

Visitation in Las Vegas down in July

11 September 2012

LAS VEGAS -- Visitation to Las Vegas was down in July, marking the second monthly decline this year.

Total visitor volume for July was down 0.8 percent from the same month in 2011, according to the monthly Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority count. April's decline of 0.9 percent broke the more than two-year streak of consecutive month-to-month gains.

In all, 3.44 million tourists came to Las Vegas in July, down from July 2011's 3.47 million total. Year to date, 23.37 million people have visited the city, up 1.9 percent from the same point in 2011.

"We continue to be optimistic about the visitation," said Scott Russell, senior manager of research for the travel authority. "Year-to-date, it's up just under 2 percent, and that's a good number. We continue to work toward our goal of 40 million this year."

Union Gaming analysts said the timing of the July Fourth holiday, which was midweek this year, likely had a negative impact.

July's citywide hotel and motel occupancy combined decreased to 87.2 percent from 88.3 percent in 2011, and year-to-date it declined slightly to 85.2 percent from 2011's 85.3 percent.

When looking at just hotels, occupancy increased year-to-date by 0.5 points, while motel occupancy's year-to-date count dropped 4.6 points to 56.5 percent from 2011's 61.1 percent.

Weekend stays in July were up to 93.9 percent from 2011's 92.7 percent, and midweek occupancy was down 1 point to 84.9 percent from 2011's 85.9 percent. Overall, Las Vegas had 4.06 million occupied hotel-room nights in July, unchanged from 2011.

Russell cited July having four weekends as opposed to five as a reason for the slight drop in visitation and occupancy for the month-to-month counts.

July's average daily room rate was down 2.2 percent to $97.12 from $99.30 in 2011. Year-to-date, the average daily rate rose 3.4 percent from $104.59 in 2011 to $108.13 in 2012.

Convention attendance in July was down 2.8 percent in prior-year comparisons to 255,961 from 263,441 in 2011, due in part to the American Sport Fishing Association's rotation out of the destination this year. The show brought in 7,200 attendees in 2011. Total conventions and meetings held were down a whopping 10.1 percent to 1,316 from 1,464.

But, year-to-date, the total number of conventions and meetings held has skyrocketed to 12,456, up 16.2 percent over 2011's 10,722 figure.

The average daily number of vehicles coming into Las Vegas rose in July, 1.8 percent from 113,113 a year ago to 115,106 in 2012. The number coming from Southern California on Interstate 15 was up 6.1 percent to 51,170 vehicles from 48,238. Vehicle counts include visitor, resident and commercial traffic.

Elsewhere in Clark County, the number of Laughlin visitors fell 7.8 percent, while Mesquite visitation was up 1.3 percent.