InterContinental Hotels Group on Friday cheered bumper demand from tourists for London rooms and vowed to dish up a $500 million payout for investors.
The FTSE 100 firm behind the Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza chains said revenue per available room in the capital rose 3.6% in the third quarter. The rest of the UK slipped 0.4%.
Finance boss Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson said the firm’s famous Park Lane hotel had its strongest-ever summer.
He added there were a number of Middle Eastern tourists in town, as well as guests using London as a base while visiting the Farnborough Air Show.
He said the market here was resilient: “People don’t want to stop enjoying themselves because of terror activities.”
Group revenue per room rose 1%, with strong performances in Russia, which benefited from hosting the World Cup — won by France — and China.
That offset a slowdown in the US, which did not match the high demand a year earlier when hurricanes put Americans in need of temporary accommodation.
IHG, led by Keith Barr, will return $500 million to shareholders through a special dividend with share consolidation to be paid in early 2019.