LA’s Hotel Industry Suffers from Super Bowl Home Field Disadvantage

Image Credit: iStock, Marina113

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The location of the Super Bowl, arguably the biggest annual cultural event in America, is chosen years in advance. That gives hotels ample time to prepare for the tens of thousands of pigskin-loving fans that will descend on their city.

But what happens when many fans already live in the host city? Los Angeles hotels are about to find out this weekend, when the hometown Rams face the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI at LA’s SoFi Stadium.

Hail Mary

It’s the second year in a row that a hometown team is in the Super Bowl. But last year’s game in Tampa Bay, where the Buccaneers defeated the visiting Kansas City Chiefs, wasn’t exactly a reliable barometer for how hotels facing the conundrum would fare. The US was still in varying stages of pandemic lockdown, and only 22,000 people were allowed inside a stadium that holds 66,000.

This year, LA is providing a better picture of the home field disadvantage, which has meant hotels losing out on pre-pandemic rates:

  • Rooms in L.A.’s four-star hotels on Super Bowl weekend are expected to go for around $1,345 a night, up from about $810 a night in Tampa last year, but well off pre-pandemic (and home-team-free) pricing in Miami in February 2020., where rates were $2,300 a night
  • Short-term rentals within walking distance of the stadium listed on Airbnb are going for nearly three times as much on Super Bowl weekend as they do a week later — but they’re still “reduced” rates.

Immaculate Perception: It’s not all about the nightly cost of a room. According to hotel-analytics firm STR, hotel occupancy is expected to reach 89% in LA and revenue per available room, an important measure of profitability, is estimated at $400 a night.

Wait’ll Next Year: Next year’s Super Bowl will take place at Arizona’s State Farm Stadium, and this year’s Arizona Cardinals finished second only to the Rams in their division. Vegas has them as a fringe contender with +2500 Super Bowl odds in 2023.