Marriott International, the Bethesda-based hospitality giant, said strong occupancy rates, more group travel and rising prices helped boost its third-quarter profits to $143 million, or 45 cents a share.
Last year, the company posted a third-quarter loss of $179 million, or 52 cents per share, following the spin-off of its time share business.
“Occupancies are finally back up,” said Laura Paugh, senior vice president of investor relations at Marriott. “We’re approaching levels that we last saw in 2007.”
Revenue for the third quarter fell about 5 percent to $2.73 billion from $2.87 billion last year.
Excluding the company’s timeshare spin-off, profit for the third quarter of 2011 totaled $102 million, or 30 cents a share, while adjusted revenue came in at $2.52 billion.
“Overall, I think it was a decent quarter,” said Smedes Rose, an analyst at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods in New York.“The wheels definitely aren’t falling off the bus here.”
The amount of revenue per available room climbed 6.7 percent to $114.64. The average daily rate for a hotel room was $155.02 in the third quarter, a 5.1 percent increase from last year.
In the Washington area, Paugh said summer travel — both for leisure and business — helped boost business in the region.
“The leisure business was much stronger this summer than it was last year,” she said. “And as you get into the first quarter of next year, we have the inauguration — and no matter who wins the elction, you’ll get a lot of people coming into town to tell the winning candidate how he can do things better. “