Blame it on 2017 being the best year in visitor volumes since the great recession began 10 years before. Blame it on a marked increase in hotel room availability in nearby St. George. Or, blame it on Las Vegas being a more experience-driven destination for millennials.

Whatever the cause, Mesquite visitor volumes ended calendar year 2018 with a 4.4 percent decline in a year-to-year comparison to 2017. While there were still 1,308,200 people who visited Mesquite for the year, that’s 60,300 less than the previous year.

In a comparison of the 12 calendar months between 2017 and 2018, nine of them showed declines in the number of visitors. Only three months — January, February and May — had an increase in visitors. January had the largest percentage increase at 2.2 percent while August had the largest decrease in visitor volumes at 15.9 percent.

The bright spot in the Las Vegas Convention and Visitor Authority report for the year showed an increase of 4.6 percent in gross gaming revenues. Those revenues totaled $130.324 million in 2018 compared to $124.626 million in 2017. Eleven months in 2018 had positive increases in Mesquite gaming revenues with February showing the only yearly comparison decline of 1.5 percent.

June had the largest percentage increase in gaming revenues at 10.3 percent while December had the smallest increase at 0.6 percent year-to-year.

The LVCVA report showed a miniscule decline of 0.7 percent in the total occupancy rates for 2018 ending the year with a 76.2 percent fill rate of hotel rooms.

The average daily room rate for Mesquite hotels increased 2.8 percent for the year coming in at an average of $60.29. That’s slightly higher than the 2017 average of $58.62. For the year, nine months showed positive gains in the ADR while only January, August and December had declines.

The yearly average revenue per available room also increased in 2018 by 2.0 percent. The average rate in 2017 was $45.09 while the rate in 2018 was $45.99. RevPAR increased in seven of 12 months with June, July, August, September and December showing declines.

Total room nights occupied ended 2018 with a 1.2 decline at 528,400, year-to-year. March, June, July, August, September, November and December declined anywhere between 13.0 percent (August) and 0.8 percent (March).