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DENVER-Hotels across the state didn’t fair as well in September as Denver area hotels, shows the latest report by the Rocky Mountain Lodging Report. Hotels across Colorado averaged a 58.8% occupancy rate, down from the 60.7% average in September 2002, according to the report by Robert Benson & Associations.

As previously reported in GlobeSt.com, metro area hotels averaged 63.4% in September, compared with 61.4% in September 2002.

The average room rate, statewide, also was down in September to $89.43 compared with $90.39 in September 2002.

In the first nine months of the year, the average occupancy rate was 58.8%, compared with 60.7% in the first half of the year.

The average room rate through the first 10 months of the year is $96.11, slightly ahead of the $95.97 average during the same period in 2002.

The statewide report shows that Aspen had the highest average room rate in September at $186 per night, with an average occupancy rate of 41.6%.

Vail, by comparison, trailed in both categories. Vail’s average room rate was $123 and its average occupancy rate was 38.1%.

Surprisingly, Vail’s hotels fared even worse than hotels in Estes Park in Grand County. Estes Park had a 64.3% occupancy rate and average room rate of $130. Only Aspen and “other resorts,” which would include Telluride, had a higher average room rate. Other resorts had an average room rate of $167, second only to Aspen, with an average occupancy rate of 33%.

The highest occupancy rate is found in Durango, in southwestern Colorado, at 72.8%. But the average room rate in Durango was $83.

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