With two big weekends this month — the ski resort opening and Thanksgiving — Breckenridge occupancy trends are remaining on pace with last year’s numbers.
The Breckenridge Ski Resort opens Friday, Nov. 8. The Breckenridge Resort Chamber, or GoBreck, reports a 10 percent increase for Friday and Saturday from last year. Total occupancy is expected to push 40 percent or more that weekend.
Bill Wishowski, BRC vice president, said these numbers reflect booking as of Oct. 15 and they are still waiting for the numbers from the last two weeks of the month.
“Anecdotal information I have says it’s been mixed results for the fill during that time period,” he said. “There’s a big question mark on the impact of the government shutdown. It’s hard to put a finger on those last October weeks.”
Wishowski said he’s encouraging snow dances to boost occupancy for the weekend of November 16, which is indicating a decrease from last season. If the pace continues, the occupancy levels might only reach 30 percent.
Since Thanksgiving falls on different days this year than last, it’s harder to do a side-by-side comparison of the dates. But for the weekend of November 23, Breckenridge is expecting occupancies in the 35 percent range, while Thanksgiving weekend should reach 50 percent or more.
“Mother Nature determines the excitement level,” he said. “Besides those already planning to travel over Thanksgiving, a few extra days of snow can help get some last minute travelers.”
Last year, the Thursday and Friday of Thanksgiving were at 50 percent, with the Saturday dropping to 38 percent. Wishowski said they are on track to repeat close to those numbers this year, one or two percentage points ahead.
November is up 51 percent overall compared to the same dates last year, based on data from the end of September. Overall, the Summit County real estate market is also seeing an increase in sales. Year-to-date sales volume through the end of August is up 22 percent from last year, and average prices are on the rise as well.
“It feels like Mother Nature has been nicer to us this year compared to early season last year,” Wishowski said. “But as to how that translates, we’ll have to see.”