STW Bank of Ireland on Suffolk Street

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    • #707898

      I was quite suprised to see that the old frontage of the Bank of Ireland on to Suffolk Street had gone. It was there throughout the renovations to the building, so I assumed that it would be retained. However, it appears that the whole interior of that part of the bank was gutted so I suppose it is only fair that the facade should go too.

      It seems strange that the new facade does not join up flush with the Ulster Bank next door. Does anyone know why this is. There is still work being carried out, so I can’t say for sure what is happening here. Incidently, for some reason the new facade reminded me of Allies and Morrison’s 85 Southwark Street in London (their own offices), but it was only on first impressions.

      Any thoughts?



    • #756920

      i understand that habitat are relocating from the green to these premises.

    • #756921

      So they are,

      buy the sofa in habitat and a throw next door in Avoca handweavers, I’d say there was fierce competition for the pitch on the Green.

    • #756922

      Seemingly Habitat’s Green site has been taken by Top Shop.

    • #756923

      Well here is the new building – as well as holding a similarity to the elegant London building Phil describes, it is also strikingly reminiscent of the Carroll’s building on Grand Parade from the western end of the street.

      Ironically the most striking feature of the building is another building – the extordinary reflection of St Andrew’s in the facade, it’s HUGE in real life!

      Looks very well from St Andrew’s (private :o) car park:

      I don’t think it works very well from Grafton St though – rather bland, cold and lifeless; does little for the streetscape.
      But from the top of Church Lane it looks great where it is given depth and life with the crisp stone or white concrete side elevation.The green tinted glass also perfectly matches the lovely 30s building’s windows next door 🙂 – ought to be kept this colour.
      The stark contrast in materials and architecture between the two is also very effective.

      As Phil pointed out, not sure what the gap between the Ulster Bank and the new building is either…

    • #756924

      It will be interesting to see how this new store changes the dynamic of Suffolk St and College Green. Im looking forward to seeing inside. Got a sneak view th other day while passing. It looked fab. Modern sleek and white. It will be interesting to see how they treated period details.

    • #756925
      Paul Clerkin

      What’s going on with the gap? that’s really weird

    • #756926

      The new Habitat on College Green opened its doors today. It should definately be worth a look.

    • #756927

      And from yesterday’s IT:

      Habitat’s new ‘store on Suffolk Street opens
      Edel Morgan

      Retail: Habitat is to open the doors of its new store at the former Bank of Ireland beside Avoca Handweavers on Suffolk Street, Dublin 2 by Friday.

      Its former premises at 7 St Stephen’s Green will be occupied by UK fashion stores Top Shop and Top Man, owned by UK fashion chain Arcadia.

      Habitat Ireland’s owner and managing director Malcolm Brighton describes the €2.5 million fit- out of the store as “brass meets glass”.The building, which has entrances on Suffolk Street and College Green, is composed of two different structures, a large 19th century double height banking hall fronting onto College Green and a 1960s building that has been enlarged.

      “It will be a meeting of old and new. The modern half will be architectural and quite urban, a big open space. The old part which has a dome will have all the decorative items, the vases and home furnishings and accessories. We will be retaining the original features of banking hall, and marrying it with a raw urban feel in the new part”

      There will also be a Relax Café on the mezzanine level overlooking College Green, a restaurant and patisserie. Vintage furniture retailer 20th Century Design will have a concession and customers will be able to have one-off pieces made by Irish furniture designer Charles O’Toole.

      Habitat is paying a rent of around €1.2 million for the old bank building which has three levels and a total floor area of 3,344sq m (35,999sq ft).

      The owners of the store, White Glory, a consortium led by the owners of Powerscourt Townhouse paid around €22 million for the building .

      It is believed that a rent rise – from €698,000 to €1.5 million – was one of the reasons behind the move from St Stephen’s Green store .

      The opening of the store will be a further boost to Suffolk Street which has undergone a renaissance in recent years. More consumers have flocked to the street following the conversion of the Church of Ireland into the tourist information office and the opening of Avoca Handweavers. The former AA headquarters was bought by the owners of a business park at Ballymount in west Dublin for €8 million. to be converted into 3.716sq m (4,000 sq ft) of retail space.

      © The Irish Times

      Incredible how much the rent was going up for the old site. Its amazing how any shop can trade under those conditions. How on earth convenience stores and the new Vodaphone (directly opposite Vodeaphone and the other end of Gratfon St from Vodaphone) can afford it.

    • #756928

      @StephenC wrote:

      And from yesterday’s IT:

      Incredible how much the rent was going up for the old site. Its amazing how any shop can trade under those conditions. How on earth convenience stores and the new Vodaphone (directly opposite Vodeaphone and the other end of Gratfon St from Vodaphone) can afford it.

      I suppose for some of the shops you mentioned on Grafton St it’s as much about getting their name out there as turning a profit in the shops although I’d suspect they manage to earn a tidy profit too despite the high rents!

    • #756929

      That is very true of some retailers who wish to break into a new market where they have little or no local brand recognition, as part of a wider strategy different property types may be used at different phases. They may start with a high profile pitch on Grafton St and then on the basis of the trade they build up here then open in secondary and or provincial locations. Whilst they mightn’t make a large profit on Grafton St or even lose money on their initial store; the brand recognition may deliver a profit that exceeds this loss at the other locations. A classic example are Next who opened late 1980’s on Grafton St before moving to suburban centres such as Blackrock and have since diversified Nationwide and even into retail warehousing at Blanchardstown. Without the initial Grafton St presence it is unclear if they would have been so successful.

      Stephen in relation to convenience stores there are different rental levels on Grafton St from about 8000 per metre in the centre down to about 2000 at the College Green end, only Bon Espresso beside West will be subject to this level of rental at their next review; that is assuming it isn’t held freehold. Both Bus stop newsagents would be discounted from this figure a little and the lower end of Grafton St bears no relation to prime levels.

    • #756930

      …largely as this terrace doesn’t even exist on most people’s radar, whatever about its secondary location 🙂
      Still, a place that’s very much so ‘up and coming’ what with a-scheming in the air for College Green…

      Looks like Habitat got a very good deal considering their previous future rental outgoings.
      A prestigious new store, acres more space and a prominent (if not quite the busiest) location in the city centre – and all for €300,000 less!
      I expect this will rise quite substantially in the medium term though…

    • #756931

      Although what’s said about the rent levels in relation to convenience stores is ture, you’re forgetting that a new convenience store just opened near the middle of Grafton Street. Like Thomond said, how they manage to afford the sky-high rents is beyoned me, but they obviously do as othersiwe they simply wouldn’t be there! However, the main problem as I’ve already said, is that the city centre is being flooded with these bloody stores. There’s a Mace/Spar/Centra store on every corner! It’s really beginning to diminish the choice for shoppers in the city.
      In relation to the new Vodafone store that’s opening up, I think that Vodafone is simply moving its second store from its current location because of its size. Thus, at least we’ll be spared from having THREE of the same shops on the one street.

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