The Beannchor Group has unveiled its £350,000 redevelopment of the The National in Belfast. Following an extensive month-long renovation, the new-look café and bar reopened to the public recently.
Set in the historic surrounds of one of Belfast’s oldest buildings – the former National Bank Building on High Street – the venue has been updated with fresh, new interiors and a revamped food and drink offering, with a focus on breakfast, lunch and high-quality coffee and cocktails.
The ground floor space has been totally transformed with stylish new ridged oak panelling and exposed brick walls against a dark blue colour scheme. Striking contemporary art and a statement blue and green herringbone-tiled bar add a splash of colour to the muted notes of the ground floor space. Banquette seating creates a series of comfortable nooks while two marble-topped islands provide further seating space.
Outside, in The National’s garden area, the installation of a fully retractable awning and new heating system creates a welcoming all-weather space for alfresco dining and drinks.
The National is also partnering with FareShare Northern Ireland, a charity set up to combat hunger hunger and redistribute surplus food to those most in need. The National will contribute at least £5,000 of financial aid to the charity over the next 12 months. This target goal will be achieved by ‘A Breakfast for a Breakfast’ initiative, where 30p from each breakfast purchased will be donated to support FareShare’s efforts to provide at least 13,450 meals to feed vulnerable children and people experiencing homelessness across Northern Ireland each year.
Speaking at the opening, Conall Wolsey, director of the Beannchor Group said that the changes had been necessary because of shifting customer tastes:
‘Our vision is that The National will be a space that will have a positive impact, not just in terms of improving the local hospitality offering, but also in championing a more sustainable approach to business,” he added,