Myrtle Beach hospitality industry bouncing back during the pandemic

Southeast Region

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — A national study finds that while hotel performance has been on an upward trend in the U.S., the hospitality industry is facing the most uneven recovery levels in history. In Myrtle Beach, however, it’s doing better than most.

According to STR, a global hospitality data and analytics company, several larger cities struggle to recover in the hospitality industry but beach destinations like the Grand Strand are seeing numbers that are near pre-pandemic levels.

“We’re starting to see the numbers that come out of the earlier part of the year, even the summer months, showing explosive growth, growth in our average daily rate, and really amazing turnaround for our tourism community, and probably might be one of the best on records at the end of the year,” said Stephen Greene, president, and CEO of the Myrtle Beach Hospitality Association.

STR data shows that in October of 2019, Myrtle Beach hotel occupancy sat at 63%. This October, that number sat just under 61%, boosting the hospitality industry for many businesses after a major setback from the pandemic.

“Myrtle Beach is a melting pot, we’ve got northerners, southerners, everybody comes here to Myrtle Beach. The national movie business is running around 30-35%, but we’re up to about almost 45% and the locals are coming back out,” said Duane Farmer, general manager of Grand 14 Cinemas.  

Many businesses said they’re ready to officially pick back up in 2022. And for new businesses like Grand Strand Brewing Company who aren’t familiar with pre-pandemic levels at the beach, owners are excited for what’s to come. 

“I’m sure that there’s still a lot of people this past year that were taking some extra precautions, and it certainly seems as we’ve gotten over the hump had been passed that for a while, so I’m hopeful that next year is totally normal and we can get back to business as usual,” said Clayton Burrous, co-owner of Grand Strand Brewing Company.

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