City Quarter offices move to full occupancy

BOUNCING back towards full occupancy is Cork’s City Quarter office and retail/restaurant investment, sold last year for €14 million to private clients/investors with MC2

Now, joining the tenant line-up at City Quarter are the major and rapidly expanding Irish financial specialists BlackBee Investments, headquartered in Cork since 2014, with subsidiary offices in Dublin’s Fitzwilliam Place.

Blackbee has been at 11 Anglesea Place, Cork, (the former Anglo Irish Bank Building, also developed by Howard Holdings), since 2015, and now is to take over the ground floor unit at City Quarter, facing Port of Cork, previously the public/retail office of the Irish Examiner and Evening Echo, and vacant for over two years.

According to recent planning notices and with the consent of property owner CQ Office Holdings, Blackbee is seeking permission to replace the existing double entrance doors on the Custom House Street/Port of Cork-facing unit. In their place, it is planned to install three fixed glass window panels and make internal modifications. BlackBee investment hope to be in occupation at City Quarter by late March.

BlackBee is chaired by Pat McArdle, a former Ulster Bank chief economist and ex-Department of Finance and ex-EU Commission, while CEO is David O’Shea, a former trader and portfolio manager.

Also on the BlackBee board are Paul Coburn and Brendan Slein, along with ex-banker and media pundit Donal Lenihan.

Meanwhile, continuing the busy-bee letting progress at City Quarter are Brookfield Renewable, an energy company who have expanded their presence in the building, now adding half the fourth floor in addition to their existing space on the fifth.

The remaining space on the fourth floor is currently under negotiation at a rent of €27.50 psf, with the Cork offices of Cushman & Wakefield handing inquiries.

Also, moving into the first floor in April is The World Nomads Travel Group, a subsidiary of nib Holdings, and is a specialist travel insurance business with a head office in Sydney, Australia, and offices in the US, Europe and now Cork.

Since the €14m investment sale via Savills of 38,000 sq ft of offices, retail/restaurant and 229 of the 280 car parking spaces) at City Quarter, the former Boardwalk bar and grill has been sold on to the Soho Bar Group, now trading as Tequila Jack’s. and the former Club Brasserie has successfully been rebranded as Docklands by restaurateurs Beth Haughton and Harold Lynch.

Now, the double basement car park in the Scott Tallon Walker designed City Quarter is currently being refurbished and the management company is planning to modernise the reception area in the short term.

Details: Cushman & Wakefield, 021-4275454



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