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Hotel and care home operators sought for £100m Belfast King's Hall plan

By John Mulgrew

Published 05/10/2016

What the King’s Hall redevelopment could look like when finished
What the King’s Hall redevelopment could look like when finished

An ambitious £100m plan to turn Belfast's King's Hall into a health and leisure park is under way, with developers searching for companies to run its proposed hotel and care home.

Benmore Group is looking for a hotel operator and a company to run the care home that will sit in south Belfast.

The site is being transformed into a £100m healthcare and leisure development in a plan that those behind the scheme say will create 500 jobs.

The new development will consist of a primary care hub along with a pharmacy, optician and dental services. There are additionally plans for residential and nursing care along with a number of commercial units such as a gym, creche, restaurants, cafes, hotel and a 750-space multi-storey car park.

Benmore Healthcare Developments is behind the park, along with business partner Octopus Healthcare.

Commercial property firm CBRE has been appointed and is now advertising the scheme, which it describes as a development opportunity.

CBRE said that it was seeking "potential operators for the hotel site and care for older people accommodation".

Developers said "expressions of interest are being sought from hoteliers on a franchise, management agreement or design and build basis".

The move to create one large integrated medical facility was proposed under Transforming Your Care, which was a review of the health system in Northern Ireland.

Speaking about progress with the scheme, Robert Ditty, CBRE director, said it was "an extremely exciting and rare opportunity for Northern Ireland and Belfast in particular".

"The hotel and care home sites respectively represent great occupier opportunities," Mr Ditty added. "Each site can be tailored to suit differing occupier requirements. This whole scheme is totally unique to Northern Ireland and has been created to meet the strong demand for a dedicated health and wellbeing village.

"The hotel in particular will have a significant pipeline of guests, resulting from the core healthcare business on this site."

David Burrows, of Benmore Healthcare Developments, added it would "be seen as revolutionary in Northern Ireland".

"Belfast has witnessed increasing levels of tourism and we feel that the King's Hall site is well positioned to capitalise on continued tourism and business growth," he explained. "The location is an ideal area for residents or indeed visiting relatives in terms of commuting to key parts of Belfast and Northern Ireland."

Plans were first unveiled in March, with public consultations following in May and June.

Those behind the scheme have said that further discussion with residents is planned before the submission of outline and full planning applications to Belfast City Council at a later date.

Early redevelopment plans for the King's Hall were first revealed back in 2015.

A proposal issued to potential investors invited bids to rejuvenate and lease the site, which could have included the possibility of hotels and more.

Belfast Telegraph

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