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Hotel rates up by 2pc

THE Irish hotel market may be due for an upturn as figures reveal room rates are on the rise for the first time in three years.

Hotels.com said that the market saw a 2pc increase in room rates in the first six months of 2011, with the average price now at €81.

The survey found the visits of Queen Elizabeth II and President Obama gave prices a boost, but Ireland was still the cheapest destination in western Europe.