Just four percent of properties operated by IHG Hotels & Resorts remained closed in the first quarter, as the hotel giant continued to battle back from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Occupancy at the more than 5,000 open hotels, however, stood at 40 percent.
IHG said group RevPAR was down by half when compared to the pre-Covid-19 first quarter of 2019.
Keith Barr, chief executive of IHG Hotels & Resorts, said: “Trading continued to improve during the first quarter of 2021, with IHG maintaining its outperformance of the industry in key markets and seeing strong performance in openings and signings as we expand our brands around the world.
“There was a notable pick-up in demand in March, particularly in the US and China, which continued into April.
“While the risk of volatility remains for the balance of the year, there is clear evidence from forwarding bookings data of further improvement as we look to the months ahead.”
IHG is currently able to change around 80 percent of 2019 rates for rooms.
In Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and Africa, the continuation of lockdowns meant RevPAR levels were largely unchanged from the prior two quarters.
In Greater China, after temporary domestic travel restrictions were lifted, demand recovered quickly in March towards levels seen in the second half of 2020.
“We opened a further 56 hotels during the quarter, and these new openings broadly offset hotels removed as part of our continued focus on maintaining the highest quality estate for our guests,” added Barr.
“Linked to this, we are making good progress on our review of the Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza estates.
“Our pipeline grew with 92 signings in the quarter, driven by our industry-leading midscale brands and continued strong owner appetite for conversion opportunities.”