PHILADELPHIA-Center City hotel occupancy for the months of June,July and August rose 6% this year, compared with the same threemonths a year ago, according to PKF Consulting. The average dailyroom rate jumped 8.5% in the same comparison.

Peter Tyson, SVP in the local PKF office, tells bothincreases are “very strong” in comparison with previous summers. Hegives partial credit to “Tutankhamen and the Golden Age of thePharaohs,” an exhibit at the Franklin Institute. During its entirerun, from February through September, the exhibit attracted nearly1.3 million visitors, a 30% increase over initial projections. “Itwas a nice plus,” Tyson says, adding that “there were also a lotmore group room nights from conventions and meetings.”

Ed Grose, executive director of the Greater Philadelphia HotelAssociation, confirms both. He tells the King Tutexhibit “accounted for more than 25,000 room nights during itsfirst four months alone. The number for the full run will behigher, once the data is in. We also had good pops over the threesummer holiday weekends, which are generally slow,” he says. “Therewere conventions here over Memorial Day, July 4th and LaborDay.”

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