The concept of “pop-up hotels” has been around for some time and is typically associated with the ice hotels that dot Scandinavia, Canada, and other countries each winter. But the notion of these “pop-ups” has been expanding recently, as Puget Sound Business Journal reports that a new apartment tower in Belltown may soon be home to a temporary hotel. AvalonBay Communities, Inc., the company behind The Avalon—set to open in May 2019 at 210 Wall Street—submitted a land use permit request on March 14th that would convert approximately 130 apartments into hotel rooms for a time period of up to six months.
While some have speculated that growing apartment inventory may be at the root of this decision, Derek Bottles, vice president of AvalonBay, said in a statement that it isn’t so much about apartment trends as it is about hotel trends. To be sure, the revenue per available room in Seattle at large has grown steadily over the past few years, moving from $85.63 in 2012 to $123.94 in 2018 (a 44.74 percent increase). When isolating the Central Business District, those figures are even higher: from $118.32 in 2012 to $178.72 (a 51.05 percent gain).
As the article outlines, “meanwhile, downtown apartment rents have increased year-over-year despite the opening of many units, which caused the vacancy rate to tick up a point to 5.1 percent,” indicating a positive outlook for the rental units to open at The Avalon as well.
“I think this is a trend we’re probably going to see more of in the future as the world changes,” Bottles added.