EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – El Paso hotels are seeing an increase in local residents booking rooms.
After being cooped up in quarantine for the past few months, a weekend in a hotel with a restaurant sounds tempting to many.
The El Paso Hotel and Lodging Association telling KTSM that these so-called “stay-cationers” are helping the El Paso hotel industry.
“We’ve gone to Indigo and we’ve stayed there and it was really fun and we felt like it wasn’t just home it was something different other than being home,” said Olivia Mendoza, an El Pasoan.
The President of El Paso Hotel and Lodging Association, Marco Ortega saying that when the pandemic began, the El Paso hotel occupancy rate was fluctuating between the high single-digits to low double-digits, averaging at around 12 percent. Now occupancy has slowly risen to 40 to 45 percent.
“That should become a viable option just to you know break the routine having to have been home all this time is kind of a drag,” said Alejandro Robles an El Pasoan.
It is a change of scenery that is also a way to support local businesses.
“The downtown area that’s trying to become more up and coming, it will help with the economy obviously,” Mendoza said.
The recently reopened Plaza Hotel is seeing a mix of out-of-town guests and “stay-cationers.”
“Were seeing a good uptick in people who are actually locals – or at least from the local area up in Las Cruces, as well, and around the surrounding areas – who just want to come and hang out and just do something a little different,” said Shanon Woodruff the marketing and events manager for Plaza Hotel.
Woodruff added that even though “stay-cationers” are on the rise, they think they are here to say.
“We’re always going to have our local population that’s here to support us. You know we’re from El Paso we love El Paso. So of course we’re going to have those people who just want to come down and experience the downtown,” said Woodruff.
The El Paso Hotel and Lodging Association is hopeful that the Fourth of July bookings will continue going up.
“I can tell you that I’ve seen from Monday to today (Thursday) I’ve seen a pick up of close to about 15 reservations just for Saturday. And I can tell you that 95% of my calls today at the hotel have been ‘is your pool open?’ And ‘do you have breakfast,'” said Ortega.
While bookings are slowly going up, the El Paso Hotel and Lodging Association says bookings are still low compared to how they were before the pandemic. Adding that many hotels are not offering breakfast or opening their pools our of precaution.