Posted on Friday 13 April 2012 by Ulster Business
Just opened on the Square is House of Zen which is Eddie Fung’s seventh restaurant in Northern Ireland. Offering a Chinese fusion menu the restaurant can accommodate up to 90 diners in a mixture of semi-private booths and traditional seating inside and on the exterior terrace. Fung’s signature look reflecting contemporary Asian style is carried throughout the 3400 square foot restaurant which will be open seven days per week.
Also new to Saint Anne’s Square is Salt Bistro which is owned by husband and wife team Donal and Teresa Cooper, both veterans of the hospitality business. Located on a glass surrounded corner of the Square the 50 seater restaurant which is fully licensed offers good quality bistro style cooking at accessible prices. Says Donal Cooper, “For the past number of years we’ve been involved in the “fine dining” sector in the South of Ireland. For our Saint Anne’s Square restaurant we wanted to offer something of equal quality but with a more casual atmosphere and mid range pricing which should appeal to the eclectic mix of people who work and relax in the Cathedral Quarter”.
Existing eatery The Potted Hen is expanding to the first floor of its premises at Saint Anne’s Square adding an extra 3,000 sq feet. This will add 50 covers to its current 75 seats plus bring much needed kitchen space to the busy restaurant which was voted in the Top 100 UK Restaurants and won NI Restaurant of the Year at the National Restaurant Awards. Owner and chef Dermot Regan is delighted that this restaurant has become such an established part of the Cathedral Quarter social scene. “We really needed to expand and the upstairs venue with fabulous views over the Square and the new MAC will also provide a bar area for people waiting for their tables.”
The popularity of Belfast’s first 24 hour Fitness Club, Pure Gym, has led to it adding an extra 3,000 square feet onto the existing 15,000. This expansion will enable Pure Gym to extend its weights and group exercise classes including yoga and zumba. In just 18 months since opening Pure Gym has already won the Members’ Choice Health Club of the Year Award for NI and has also invested in new power plates and introduces a range of intense FAST classes for time pressed clients. Pure Gym Manager Liam Nelson explains, “Our unique approach to fitness provision with no contracts and low costs has proved a real winner in Saint Anne’s Square and a catalyst towards helping break down barriers to health and fitness for people of all ages”.
Peter Jennings, Turnus Ltd said, “The news of these openings and expansions demonstrates continued confidence in what has become a real hub for culture and gastronomy. There are now only two units left to let on the Square, one of which has just been agreed. With the MAC opening this month and the University of Ulster’s major proposals for relocation to the Cathedral Quarter we are anticipating a very buoyant future for Saint Anne’s Square”.
When House of Zen and Salt Bistro open at the £100m mixed-use regeneration scheme they join a 169 bedroom Ramada Encore Hotel, the Potted Hen restaurant, 4th Wall Restaurant, the 24hr Pure Gym, a 560 multi-storey car park as well as 103 apartments and 14,000 sq ft of high specification offices.