NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - For the second year in a row, Nacogdoches hotel motel tax revenue has increased. This happened despite the temporary closure of the Fredonia Hotel.
The 2015 revenue increase has business leaders asking if the hotel motel bust is over.
On Wednesday, a room was readied for the next guest at the Nacogdoches Hampton Inn.
The preparation happened frequently last year based on just released hotel motel tax revenue figures. Carl Watson, director of the Nacogdoches Convention and Visitors Bureau hopes the data shows a promising trend.
"I believe in 2014 they were up over 14 percent from the previous year, and then we just finished up the calendar year about 12 1/2 percent over the 2014 figures, so yeah, we're very excited about it," said Carl Watson, the executive director of the Nacogdoches Convention and Visitors Bureau.
It's a far cry from the years CVB Marketing Director Jannette Sparks recalls with hotel manager Okbar Ahmed. She remembers when landmen with the oil and gas industry moved out of Deep East Texas.
"And then we really had a bust in 2013. Sparks said. That's when we bottomed out."
The upward trend is attributed not to conventions as the Fredonia Hotel remains closed. Nor can it be caused by higher room rates.
"I dropped my rates, so we can build more revenue for the whole city and town," said Ahmed, the general manager of Hampton Inn & Suites and Comfort Suites.
More heads in beds is primarily attributed to people just wanting to check in to see what Nacogdoches has to offer.
"A steady increase in people traveling," Watson said. "I'm sure the past few months the decrease in gas has not hurt."
Advertising hasn't hurt either. The majority of all the hotel motel tax revenue is put into advertising in magazines and the Internet.
Perhaps it counterbalanced the Fredonia Hotel closure. This year's projected opening isn't a concern for others in the industry.
"I would rather have 10 more hotels in this town to give you an edge of competing with all the other hotels, and I think there should be no effect," Ahmed said.
That might be why the hotelier is projecting a six to 10 percent increase in his hotel's occupancy rate. That too will look good on the CVB'S projection report.
Last year's revenue added up to over$774,000. A Website redesign is on the horizon for the Nacogdoches CVB.