Washoe hotel rates reach record high

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Washoe hotel rates reach record high

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The average daily hotel room rate in Washoe for August was the highest ever recorded for the county.

Last month, the average rate was $100.10, a nearly 12 percent increase from August of 2012. That's according to the Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority.

Authority President Chris Baum attributes the spike to a combination of meeting and convention business, along with a strong events season, including a new addition to Hot August Nights: the Barrett-Jackson auction.

"That brought in a clientele whose coming to town to buy expensive cars and they're used to staying in nice hotels. And we've got a lot of nice hotels that their prices didn't scare them away at all, so we found a higher average rate the week they were in town."

Along with the record-breaking rate last month, Baum says that for the first eight months of this year, the daily average room rate has been nearly $10 over last year's.

"Our average rates have been flat-lined for the last 5-plus years in the low-70s for the entire year. And so, after five years of no growth to see $9.53 more to the first eight months of 2013, it's a dramatic change."

Last month, nearly 345,000 taxable rooms were rented in Washoe County. That's actually a 1-percent decrease from last year, but Baum says the higher room rates more than made up the difference, generating an additional $2.7 million in revenue.