Hilton Hotels Corp. saw first quarter earnings rise 73% as demand for business and leisure travel continued to strengthen, which in turn allowed Hilton to raise room rates. Net income rose to $64 million (or .16 cents a share) from $37 million (or .10 cents a share) one year earlier.

“Strong demand from both business and leisure travelers, particularly the former, is enabling us to significantly increase room rates at most of our hotels,” says Stephen Bollenbach, co-chairman and chief executive officer at Hilton Hotels Corp.

Hilton posted double-digit gains in revenue per available room (RevPAR) at many of the company-owned hotels. Meanwhile, revenues from company-owned brands increased by 3% to hit $495 million. Hilton operates the Doubletree and Embassy Suites brands plus all Hilton properties.