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Park City’s fall tourism starts strong after quiet summer

The colors of fall are beginning to fully emerge in Park City.
Parker Malatesta
Fall colors decorate the slopes above Park City in 2023.

The Park City Chamber of Commerce reported less summer revenue, but its models are predicting more revenue than normal over the next six months.

It’s not surprising other areas in Utah draw more tourists than Park City does during the summer.

“Generally at this point in the year they're going to the parks is what's happening, and Park City has never performed the way that our national parks perform," said Dan Howard, vice president of communications for the Park City Chamber of Commerce.

And Howard said it was even quieter than usual this year. When he says “quieter,” that means the revenue per available room, or RevPAR, is down.

“There's one idea about what rates are in the city, and then there's an idea about what occupancy is,” Howard explained. “But it's really that combination that tells you whether or not the hotels are actually being successful.”

In September, revenue per room was down 4.8% compared to September 2022. That means Transient Room Tax—a major source of revenue in Summit County that gets reinvested in tourism-, recreation-, events-, culture- or transportation-related projects—may also take a hit.

The good news is revenue this fall has been stronger than normal, even though Park City is between seasons. October 2023 is outperforming October 2022 by 0.3%.

And the Park City Chamber's models predict revenue per room will be up 4% over the next six months, compared to the same time frame last year.

Howard pointed to the 7th Annual Shotski, which he thought drew a larger crowd than Park City generally sees during the shoulder season.

“It was a lovely crowd, but not an overwhelming crowd. And I think that's an ideal condition,” Howard said.

That’s what the chamber wants: fewer visitors spending more, so Park City's revenue goes up without overloading its service industries and infrastructure.