I was recently asked how to determine occupancy for hotel rooms, found a credit interpretation ruling that included an acceptable formula, and decided to share it with you here! A CIR dated 5/13/2007 for a LEED-NCv2.1 project essentially stated that you would count all of the employees as full-time equivalent (FTE) occupants, and that you could use a multiplier for the persons/hotel room to determine a transient occupancy for the building.
The design team proposed that you would take the number of hotel rooms and multiply that by an average number of guests per occupied room of 2 people/room. Then multiply that number by the average room occupancy per night, which according to the American Hotel & Lodging Association is 63.1% for 2007. That leaves us with the following:
Hotel Rooms * 2 Guests/Room * .631 Occupancy Average = Transient Occupants
So for a hotel with 100 rooms you would get a result of 126.2, which after rounding leaves us with a transient occupancy of 127 for the hotel. Add to that the number of employees provided by the owner and you have your peak loading. Determining the number of FTEs is unfortunately up to you, as I would suspect this number varies greatly depending on whether the property is full or limited service, budget or luxury, etc. If anyone has any advice for FTE rules of thumb for hotels please share!
BONUS! Another CIR dated 9.14.2006 discussed the fact that hotel guests could reasonably be excluded from the bicycle rack requirements due to the serious doubt that anyone will be traveling from city to city overnight via bike.