Merchant hotel owners reveal new plans for Lisburn

By John Campbell
BBC News NI Economics & Business Editor

image captionThe firm that owns the Merchant is building a new hotel in Lisburn

The owners of Belfast's Merchant hotel are planning to develop a 52-bedroom hotel in Lisburn, County Antrim.

The Beannchor Group will convert about 30,000 sq ft of existing commercial space at Lisburn Square in the city centre.

An opening date of late summer 2019 is being targeted, subject to planning approval.

Beannchor say they are planning a contemporary "urban-style" theme for the development.

Three years ago the company developed a similar scheme in Belfast, converting a former office building into the Bullitt hotel.

Bill Wolsey, managing director of Beannchor, said the project would create 75 full-time and part-time jobs.

"We already have a presence in Lisburn Square through our very successful Little Wing Pizzeria and have been working alongside the square's owners for the past six months to create the vision for a hotel that the people of Lisburn can be proud of," he said.

Beannchor is one of Northern Ireland's largest hospitality businesses controlling two hotels, a portfolio of bars and a chain of pizza restaurants.

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