WELLINGTON, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) -- Nights spent in short-term commercial accommodation set a new record in the year ending September 2018, with 40 million guest nights for the first time, New Zealand's statistics department Stats NZ said on Monday.
Annual guest nights exceeded 30 million in the year ending July 2004, and were over 20 million in the year ending June 1997, when annual records began, according to Stats NZ.
Since guest nights reached 30 million 14 years ago, hotels have led the growth, accounting for more than a third of all guest nights in 2018, accommodation statistics manager Melissa McKenzie said.
"Annually, guests spent more nights in hotels than motels for the first time in 2008, when motel nights dipped during the global financial crisis. Since then hotels have consistently been the largest provider of short-term commercial guest nights in New Zealand," McKenzie said.
Annual guest nights in Queenstown-Lakes district, a popular tourist attraction, grew the most in the last 14 years. Following the 2010-2011 earthquakes, Queenstown-Lakes district took over from Christchurch as the second largest territorial authority area for guest nights, statistics show.
"Guest nights spent in Queenstown-Lakes district are now approaching levels seen in central Auckland," McKenzie said.
In the month of September 2018, total guest nights rose 2.9 percent, compared with September 2017, according to Stats NZ.