Lee County, Florida, was struck hard by Hurricane Ian, with many short-term vacation rental properties destroyed. Authorities have paused tourism in the county as they assess the full extent of the damage. "The impediment to normalcy is the physical infrastructure, literally building things," said Geoff Luebkemann with the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association. Some vacation rentals are departing the tourism market, with Dream Vacation Rentals' Ryan E. Block saying his business is switching to a property management model. Also complicating the recovery is a loss of tourism sector employees, many of whom saw their homes and jobs wiped away by the hurricane. "Best case scenario [is] those folk stay there and find alternative employment as part of the response and rebuild effort," said Luebkemann. "Those folk are in the market and pivot back to hospitality."
Skift (10/07/22) Dawit Habtemariam