Belfast in for a treat with new Patisserie Valerie
High-end French-style bakery Patisserie Valerie is set to open its first Northern Ireland outlet in Belfast early next year.
The chain, which has around 90 shops across the UK and is valued at £320m, will make its debut here at the former Jaeger store in the Scottish Provident Building at Donegall Square West in the city centre.
The Belfast Telegraph first revealed in June that the business was to set up shop here.
The cake shop will transform the former fashion boutique into a den of mille-feuilles and eclairs, and it is understood that a second unit is expected here before the end of 2016.
The arrival marks the latest investment in a business that began in 1926 at Frith Street in London when Belgian pastry chef Madame Valerie sought to introduce fine continental-style baked goods to England.
Commercial property agent Lambert Smith Hampton acted on behalf of the landlord to negotiate the new letting.
Lambert Smith Hampton's Ryan Kee, director in retail agency, said: "The resurgence in Belfast city centre retail is fairly buoyant at the minute and indicates exciting times are ahead."
Patisserie Valerie is not the first high-end cake shop to open here in the past few years.
Miel et Moi opened up on the Lisburn Road earlier this year as Northern Ireland's first licensed patisserie.
But another venture, Patisserie Mimi, shut its doors in 2014 after around a year in business.
At the other end of the spectrum, low-cost bakery chain Greggs has finally revealed that it is opening its first stand-alone outlet in the Boucher Road Retail Park in Belfast.
It comes after the Belfast Telegraph revealed the bakery giant was eyeing as many as 50 locations across Northern Ireland, with around 10 in Belfast alone.