Following up on STR’s initial Hurricane Ida analysis from 10 September, a vast majority of hotels in the New Orleans MSA have reopened with improving occupancy levels, especially in the core city center/central business district. This high volume of reopenings was to be expected because most closures were due to short-term power outages rather than property damage. Remaining short-term temporary closures are mostly concentrated in submarkets outside of the city.
In terms of Ida-related demand, data for 5-11 September indicated a smaller shift compared with the previous week. Occupancy moved downward in safe harbor markets in Alabama, Mississippi, etc., while occupancy ticked up in the New Orleans market. Historically, hurricane-related demand grows as displaced residents return to affected markets and hotels see added business from relief workers, insurance adjustors, etc.