£53m Grand Central Hotel opens in Belfast

PA

The most expensive hotel to be built in Northern Ireland has opened its doors for the first time.

The £53 million Grand Central is housed in a former 23-storey office block in the heart of Belfast.

It is one of a series of new hotels opening across the city this year as the tourism industry strives to meet the demand driven by growing visitor numbers.

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Only certain sections of the 300-bed venue opened on Wednesday, with the entire building to be completed by the end of the summer, including the Observatory Bar, which will offer a panoramic view of the city from the 23rd floor.

The transformation of the Windsor House office block into the Hastings Hotels group's latest property has taken two years.

It has opened six months after the founder of the group, Sir William Hastings, died at the age of 89.

Hastings Hotels directors
Hastings Hotels directors

General manager Stephen Meldrum said: "We are delighted to open the doors of the Grand Central Hotel and see the vision of our late chairman, Sir William Hastings, be fully recognised.

"The Grand Central Hotel is a really unique proposition for Belfast. No detail has been overlooked and we are excited to bring a new era to the city."