The picture for Orange County hotel investment continues to improve, with the number of sales in the first half of the year up more than 125%, according to a report from Irvine-based hotel brokerage and industry researcher Atlas Hospitality Group.

There were nine transactions in Orange County through June, for a combined total value of $42.28 million, up 41.6% from the year-ago period. The median price per room fell 10.9% to $67,308.

The sale of the 159-room Balboa Bay Club & Resort in Newport Beach was the largest transaction in OC during the first half of the year.

The Balboa Bay Club deal closed in June and was part of the sale of International Bay Club Inc., which also owned the Newport Beach Country Club. The two properties had an estimated value of $170 million last year. The buyer was private equity firm Eagle Four Partners and hotel owner and manager Pacific Hospitality Group LLC, both of Irvine.

Sales of hotels statewide were up 8.9% to 159 transactions through June.

Those sales totaled $1.75 billion, down 39.1% from a year earlier.

The median price per room for the state fell 9.3% to $55,000.

Hotel sales are expected to increase in the second half of the year with the inventory of distressed properties shrinking, according to the Atlas report.