The Ewart, the iconic £85m office development in Belfast’s Linen Quarter has welcomed two significant new tenants, keeping it on course to be fully let only a few months following completion of building works.

The Belfast city centre development has recently welcomed global company AXA Insurance to its 14th floor, and they will soon be joined by specialist recruitment consultancy MCS Group who will occupy the 10th floor of the new office space.

With Deloitte and Evelyn Partners having already taken 81,000 sq. ft and 11,484 sq. ft respectively and developers MRP confident of the delivery of further significant lettings in the weeks ahead, demand for this sought-after office space continues to grow.

Dating back to 1870, the restoration of the Grade B+ listed former Ewart warehouse is the final phase of the Bedford Square regeneration which included the Invest NI Headquarters. The historic building has been sensitively restored to its former glory and transformed to physically connect at first and second floors to a contemporary high specification 17-storey Ewart tower at its rear. The Ewart’s unique characteristics such as its stone façade and copper domes have been retained within the restoration to ensure its heritage is protected for future generations.

A prominent architectural landmark on Belfast’s skyline, at over 69 metres in height with panoramic views across the city, The Ewart has exemplary sustainability and technology features, achieving a BREAAM Excellent rating, operational zero waste to landfill, 124 cycle parking spaces, solar PV roof panels and a green energy tariff for all occupants, making it one of Belfast’s most attractive and flexible new office spaces.

Welcoming AXA and MCS Group, Stephen Surphlis, Managing Director of MRP, said:

“We are delighted to welcome AXA Insurance and MCS Group, two successful and ambitious businesses to The Ewart.  They will significantly add to the dynamic and diverse range of global businesses that are locating their head offices in our landmark office in Belfast city centre. This level of demand for The Ewart, which we are confident will continue in the weeks ahead, is a testament to the innovative, sustainable and high-quality features within the iconic building, which is now one of the most sought-after office spaces in the city.

“We are extremely proud of the role that our team has played in re-establishing this prominent address in the Linen Quarter and offering the market a truly unique proposition of the heritage of a listed building with that of a modern new build Grade A office.”

Philip Bradley, CEO of AXA Insurance, comments on AXA’s launch of their newly fitted out space in The Ewart:

“Belfast has been an important location for AXA for many years and plays a vital role in supporting our customers in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. AXA employs over 700 people across Northern Ireland and today’s announcement regarding our new offices in the landmark Ewart building is further evidence of our commitment to Belfast.  We look forward to many productive years helping to support our growing customer base from this fabulous new building.”

Robert Ditty of CBRE, the leasing agent for The Ewart, said:

“The Ewart is an outstanding office development with digitally connected and sustainable office accommodation which is a great fit for the vision of many businesses in Northern Ireland. It is clear the opportunities this new workspace presents to companies investing and relocating in Belfast, with its contemporary design and extensive wellbeing facilities, is a major reason why the building is proving so popular with the business community.

“Coming as it does against the backdrop of a difficult post pandemic period for office space in the city centre the success of The Ewart says a lot about the quality of the workspace within the building.”