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SAN FRANCISCO-There are a record number of hotels on the market in California, a record number of troubled hotels in general and record low sales, according to hotel industry guru Alan Reay, president of Irvine, CA-based Atlas Hospitality Group. For the hotel industry in California, it’s the perfect storm.

In Northern California, there were 26 hotel sales through the first half of 2009, a 42.2% drop from the first half of 2008, when 45 hotels changed hands, according to a Reay’s mid-year report. The price per room through the first half of 2009 came in at $77,500, an 18.7% drop from $95,474 in the first half of 2008. Statewide, there were 49 sales in the first half of 2009 compared to 100 in the first half of 2008, while the price per room fell 29.8% to $75,664 from $107,821.

“When we went through [and economic recession] in the 1990s, Northern California hotels were relatively unscathed,” Reay tells GlobeSt.com. “Now hotels like the Four Seasons and Renaissance Stanford Court [in San Francisco are in trouble]; to have that caliber of asset getting in trouble so early in the cycle is a clear indication that this is going to be very deep and will affect a lot of properties.”

Breaking down Northern California further, the worst performer was Fresno County. The average price per room paid there through the first half of 2009 fell more than 65% to $36,573 from $104,857 in the first half of 2008. In San Francisco County, the average price per room fell 38.8% to $80,002 from $130,769 in 2008. In Sacramento County, the average price per room fell 47.5% to $101,933 from $194,129 in 2008. In Alameda County, the average price per room fell 18.5% to $85,825 from $104,857 in 2008. In Sonoma County, the average price per room fell 36.4% to $43,750 from $68,788.

With so many hotels on the market, revenues on the decline and little to no financing to be had, Reay told GlobeSt.com last month that equity is being erased at a record pace and when the surge of lender deals eventually hits the market, “there will have to be a complete re‐pricing throughout the entire market” in order to get rid to the backlog, Reay said.

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