Businesses such a those in Beirut Souks say the expected increase in sales never materialized. (The Daily Star/Grace Kassab)
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Trade activity has dropped by 20 to 25 percent starting mid-June compared to same period of last year, said Nicolas Chammas, president of Beirut Traders Association.The Tourism Ministry said a week ago that the number of Arab tourists increased by 90 percent in June compared with the previous year.Chammas said that trade activity witnessed a great improvement in the second quarter of the year but then it started dropping following the suicide bombing that took place in Duroy Hotel in June as tourists traveled back to their homelands.Similarly, Coral Beach Hotel and Resort reported an occupancy rate of 94 percent compared to 100 percent during Eid al-Fitr last year.However, Ayman Nasreddine, director of sales and marketing at Hotel Le Cavalier, said that he has started receiving calls for conference reservations for the month of August, which is expecting to boost the occupancy rate at his hotel to around 70 percent.
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