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DENVER-Aspen hotels boasted the highest room rate in August, while Vail rates slumped from a year earlier, shows the latest Rocky Mountain Lodging Report for hotels throughout the entire state.

The report shows that the average room rate in Aspen during August was $301.96. A year earlier, the average room rate in Aspen was $264.89. Glenwood Springs, which is off Interstate 70 and is near Aspen, also did well, with an 87.4% average occupancy rate and an average room rate of $114.68.

By comparison, the average room rate in Vail was $139.75, down from the $160.28 from August 2002.

Bob Benton, of Robert S. Benton & Associates, the author of the report, says he doesn’t know why Aspen soared and Vail didn’t.The average occupancy rate in Vail was only 51%, while it was 72% in Aspen.”My sense is that tourists are still visiting the state, but what we’re lacking are the groups, such as medical conferences, which used to come to the mountains,” Benton tells GlobeSt.com.

For the entire state, the hotel occupancy rate in August averaged 69.1%, down slightly down from 70.1% in August 2002. The average room rate in August was $93.36, compared with $96.44 per night.

Many had expected the hotel market to be stronger this August, because last summer wild fires ravaged much of the state, dramatically cutting into the tourism business.Durango, in the southwestern part of Colorado, did well, however, with an 83.3% occupancy rate and average room rate of $94.03. Colorado Springs, the second largest city in the state, had an overall occupancy rate of 74.6%, with an average room rate of $80.06.

Another report by Benton for the Denver area, showed similar trends as the state report.

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