Hotel market continues to grow in Springfield

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- With a strong tourism industry, the hotel market continues to grow in the Queen City.

Tracy Kimberlin, the president/ CEO of the Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau, says since December 2017 three new properties have created almost 300 hotel rooms. Currently, there are around 750 new rooms in the works. These projects are either under construction or in the planning phase.

"Hotel development is great but what we want to be sure of is that the supply and demand is kept in balance," Kimberlin said.

Hotels citywide have a 65 percent occupancy rate, some are booked even more. Kimberlin believes this is a healthy rate but worries with more rooms that number could drop.

"I think though, by the end of 2020, we will probably drop to somewhere in the low 60's," Kimberlin said.

To bring in more customers, Kimberlin believes a convention center or upgraded sports facilities would help. But with each new hotel opening, job opportunities also come with the property. He says a 100 room hotel can provide anywhere from 25 to 35 jobs.

The Home2 Suites off of North Glenstone opened less than two years ago. General Manager, Sonja Needham, says the hotel is doing well.

"This year we have really picked up and we are just doing great," Needham said.

With so many new properties coming in, Needham says they watch the market. However, she believes offering an extended stay and being a Hilton property separates them from the competitors.

"I mean there are a lot of properties right now," Needham said. "It's pretty saturated right now. So it is something we need to keep an eye on."

Her team welcomes guests to town and she is hopeful they will continue to stay busy.

"My hope is that we will continue doing better every day and our occupancy and rate will continue to increase," Needham said.