1956 proved a good year for the hotel industry as a whole.
Room occupancy levels remained at 72% for the third
consecutive year. This gratifying stability followed eight
years of declining occupancy ratios, which in turn
followed the all-time peak of 93% occupancy achieved in
1946 due to the housing crisis. Through increases in room
rates, the hotel industry in 1956 obtained a 4% gain in
room revenues. Food and beverage revenues rose 3%
over those of 1955.
The record of Hilton Hotels Corporation in 1956 was
better than that of the industry as a whole. Our room
occupancy ratio was 76%, and room revenues improved
4.3% over those of 1955. Food and beverage sales ran
5.2% higher than in 1955, and overall revenues were up
5.0% over 1955 revenues. Against the yardstick of ten-
year growth, as indicated on the chart on the facing page,
gains were even more impressive. Room revenues were
148% higher than they were in 1952, and 358% higher
than they were in 1947. Food and beverage sales were
118% higher than those of five years ago, and 299%
higher than those of ten years ago. Overall revenue increased 128% above the level achieved in 1952, and
316% above the level achieved in 1947.
The benefits of Hilton's continuing program of modernization and improvement were clearly reflected in net
profits from operations, which, in 1956, rose 19.8%, to
the highest level by far in our corporate history. In addition, substantial profits were realized on the sale of
properties, bringing overall net profit to a point 84.0%
above that of a year ago.
1956 gross revenues of the Hilton Hotels Corporation,
surpassing all previous records, totaled $198,880,035,
compared with the $189,456,563 volume of business
attained in 1955, and 1947's total of $47,842,722. A
number of new Hilton Hotels contributed to revenues for
portions of the year. These included The Statler Hilton
in Dallas, from which revenues were received for eleven-
and-a-half months; the Netherland Hilton, from which
revenues were received for seven months; the Terrace
Hilton, two months; the San Antonio Hilton, eight
months; the Continental Hilton, three weeks; and the
Senator Hotel, from which revenues were received for
five months. Offsetting these gains was the loss of revenues from the hotels Jefferson, Roosevelt, and Mayflower—sold in December, 1955, and in February and
March of 1956, respectively.
Room operations in 1956 yielded revenues amounting
to $85,082,755, compared with $81,566,520 for the preceding year, and $18,564,498 for 1947. The sale of food
and beverages accounted for $89,264,241, as opposed to
$84,832,829 in 1955, and $22,379,960 in 1947. Other
operated departments contributed $15,368,355 to 1956
revenue, as against $15,059,221 in 1955, and $4,979,440
derived from this source in 1947. Store rentals in 1956
were $2,696,413, compared with $2,460,510 for the year
preceding, and $1,057,184 in 1947. Other income amounting to $4,895,226 was received in 1956, compared to
$4,362,857 received the year before, and $796,945 received ten years ago.
It is the intention of Hilton Hotels Corporation to
maintain its profit leadership in the hotel field, by means
of thoughtful modernization, intensified sales and promotional efforts, and resourceful expansion of the many
services demanded and expected by our guests.