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Business Observer Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022 2 weeks ago

More than half the hotel rooms in Lee County reopen post-Ian

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Tourism leaders believe the available rooms will be quickly reserved.

Six weeks after Hurricane Ian pummeled Lee County, more than half of the county's stock of hotel rooms, 56.4%, have reopened, according to a statement. 

The news, which counts 8,135 rooms now open, comes a few weeks after the Oct. 19 reopening of the Sanibel Causeway bridge, states the press release from the Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau. 

“We’re going to see strong demand for the rooms that are now open,” Cecil Pendergrass, the Lee County Commission chair and the chair of the Lee County Tourist Development Council, says in the release. “We’re looking for people to come back as soon as the area is ready to welcome them. We know the passion for Southwest Florida hasn’t changed.”

"We opened our new Fairfield by Marriott Bonita Springs, Sept. 29, the day after Hurricane Ian," Tom Albrecht, director of sales, Fairfield Inn & Suites Bonita Springs, says in the statement. "Within a couple days we hit 100% occupancy and have stayed full. We are thrilled to be working hard and providing our new hotel rooms to those who need us locally and to those coming in to help in various ways. We are very pleased to join the Bonita Springs hotel community during this critical time.”

“It makes me extremely proud to be part of community that has a strong will, incredible work ethic and undeniable compassion," adds Brian Kramer, general manager of the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa. "The amount of work that has been accomplished over the last month is nothing short of extraordinary. It reminds us that adversity makes us stronger and will build us back bigger and stronger than ever.”

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