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Politics and business leverage luxury tourism in Brasília

July 19, 2017 10h00 AM | Last Updated: September 04, 2017 09h21 AM

Brazil is plenty of paradisiacal beaches and waterfalls, yet business travel is what makes its capital emerge as a tourist center. The highest proportion of accommodation units (rooms, chalets or suites) per accommodation establishment can be found there: 65, more than twice the average in Brazil, which is 32 rooms per establishment. Considering just the beds offered, Brasília remains the leader: 141 per establishment, while the average in Brazil is 77 and, in São Paulo, second placed, 37 beds per establishment.

These data come from the IBGE´s Survey of Accommodation Services - PSH, collected between 2011 and 2016 to portray the hotel network in Brazil. According to the PSH, there were 31,299 accommodation establishments in Brazil last year, among hotels, motels, inns, apart hotels, flats, hostels, camping and other categories. This network offered 1,011,254 accommodation units (suites, rooms or chalets), with 2,407,892 beds.

The survey also points out that Brasília had the highest proportion of large-sized accommodation establishments, i.e., with 50 rooms and more. No less than 36.3% of the hotels in the federal capital were in this category, a proportion higher than twice the average in Brazil (15.4%).

According to Luiz Andrés Ribeiro, analyst of the IBGE´s Coordination of Services and Trade, "Brasília was the capital with the highest proportion of luxury accommodation establishments, reaching 6.8%, whereas the average in Brazil was 3.9%". Although the Federal District had also hosted the 2014 World Cup, this was not the unique explanation for Andrés: "Such growth is much likely linked with the political agenda and with the business tourism", explains him.

Indirectly, these figures reflect investments, pointing out that the Federal District is a booming tourism market. The PSH shows that Brasília was one out of three capitals in Brazil with the highest growth rate in the number of rooms offered between 2011 and 2016: 50.2%, right behind Palmas (58.9%) and Belém (58.8%).

In 2016, Brasília was third placed in number of beds (39,424), after São Paulo (124,794) and Rio de Janeiro (83,070). It was also third placed in number of accommodation units (17,998), equally after São Paulo (61,068) and Rio (38,244).

The IBGE´s Survey of Accommodation Services was carried out in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism. Marx Beltrão, minister of Tourism, highlighted that the PSH "is key for all the spheres of government to plan their tourism policies along the next years. Its data point out an expressive growth in the supply of accommodations in Brazil during the mega-events cycle. This is a legacy that we should work on to boost the Brazilian economy".

Text: Luiz Bello


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