Belfast businessman plans city centre aparthotel

George Sell George Sell Uploaded 23 September 2019

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UK: Andras House director Rajesh Rana, who owns a series of Belfast hotels, is planning to build an aparthotel on Bedford Street.

Rana, who has served as president of Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce since June 2018, is seeking to redevelop a site opposite the BBC's headquarters on Ormeau Avenue.

The proposal, which remains at the pre-application stage, involves retaining the existing four-storey terraced building fronting onto Bedford Street, converting the property into offices, and building a new aparthotel building behind the offices, installing a new glazed link to connect it with the terrace.

The bid also provides for a new ground level café, which would sit between JD Wetherspoon's Belfast premises and Pizza Express.

Last year Andras House launched a bid to redevelop a former bank on Main Street in Portrush into an aparthotel style project.

Rana's hotel portfolio in Belfast currently includes the Crowne Plaza in Shaw's Bridge, Hampton by Hilton, two Holiday Inn venues and two IBIS hotels. Andras House also operates serviced apartments on the Lisburn Road.

The new Bedford Street project would sit alongside a number of rival hotels including the Park Inn by Radisson and two Maldron ventures, the Clayton Hotel on Ormeau Avenue and the new Maldron hotel on Brunswick Street, which opened last year.

An event to outline the nature of Rana's aparthotel bid is due to take place at the Holiday Inn on Hope Street on October 22.

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