Signature Living’s George Best Hotel given greenlight for final phase

Planning permission has been granted by Belfast City Council for the final phase of construction for Signature Living’s George Best Hotel.

The property developer and hotel operator said the funding is in place to complete construction, and now that the final planning consent hurdle has been passed, construction will “continue apace”, with a target completion date of June 2020.

The hotel, in the heart of Donegall Square, will see the Scottish Mutual Building transformed into a 65-bedroom boutique hotel. Celebrating the life and career of Northern Irish footballing icon George Best, the venue will offer a 150-cover ground floor bar and restaurant and a 120-cover seated top floor multifunctional conference and wedding venue.

Lawrence Kenwright, chairman of Signature Living, said: “We’re delighted to have achieved planning permission and finally be on the home straight in the construction of this beautiful hotel. Restoring listed buildings is not always a smooth ride and it hasn’t been so with this hotel, but I’m excited that we are now close to the George Best joining our stable of successful trading hotels.

“We are grateful to our investors for their patience with this development and we will be in touch with them all over the coming weeks to commence the buy-back process.”

Founded in 2008, Signature Living currently operates six trading properties in the UK, including the Signature Living Apart-Hotel, The Shankly Hotel, 30 James Street Hotel, Arthouse Hotel and Alma de Cuba bar-restaurant, which are all located in Liverpool.

The group opened its first hotel outside of Liverpool, The Exchange Hotel in Cardiff, in 2017, the final phase of which is due to be completed in Q2 this year.

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