New business regions in some of the bigger cities across the UK will always bring with them a buzz over regeneration, higher business levels and a chance for companies to capitalise on demand in certain areas.
One new area that has pounced on all of the above in recent times has been The International Quarter (TIQ) in Stratford, East London. Previously the main hosting site for 2012 Olympic Games in the capital, Stratford has looked to make the most of the highlight this put on it with a chance 'to establish a new metropolitan business district for London that is thriving, sustainable, successful and inclusive'. The owners say that businesses opening there will be a part of a thriving, happening and sustainable community with an eye on the future.
One of the biggest positives to come from the area, however, has been the way it has come to the fore with regards to meeting demand in areas of the property sector that have been struggling in the past, with new developments helping to meet shortages in the likes of housing and hotel rooms.
The need for hotel rooms is a UK-wide issue at the moment, but particularly in the capital. On one hand, there are now more people than ever looking for hotels for holidaying at home rather than travelling overseas - some parts of the UK have seen bookings of this type up by 19 per cent in the last year. Meanwhile, there has also been a surge in demand for corporate bookings, according to HVS London, which has said there could be a rise in demand for luxury and high-end rooms.
It said that changing demands from consumers have also facilitated the need for all new developments. In the capital, boutique hotel rooms and serviced apartments have become real trends for those in both the holiday sector and business stays.
HSV London's chairman Russell Kett said that the rise in these types of modern hotel type are helping to cater for a more sophisticated customer base - a reality that has seen more and more looking away from the traditional UK hotel room.
And with financing still an issue, it is far easier for companies to get funding for their developments than in other regions, which means London has been able to capitalise. One such large development in Stratford will be looking to really take advantage of demand while addressing the recently-experienced shortage in rooms thanks to changing customer bases.
Starboard Hotels and Union Hanover Securities are currently taking part in a joint venture that will see a new upmarket hotel built overlooking to former athletes' village in The International Quarter in Stratford under the banner of Starboard Atlantic Hotels LLP.
The 275,000 sq ft hotel was first announced last July, and it will comprise a design-led Urban Villa extended stay hotel that will cater to the market looking for serviced apartments for their holiday stays, as well as an upmarket hotel under an international brand that is set to tackle the need for more business-oriented rooms.
Being situated in such a thriving new business region as The International Quarter suggests that it is the latter that will really thrive, giving overseas and domestic visitors fantastic access to businesses there while staying little more than a stone's throw away in a fantastic and luxurious setting.
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As well as a shortage in hotel rooms to meet the ever-changing market, though, London has also suffered from a shortage in homes in recent times, with EY Item Club warning that the imbalance of supply and demand could lead to a property bubble in the capital.
In Stratford in particular, this has been earmarked as an issue, with the area's District Council stating that the need for newly built homes is now even greater than had previously been thought. It believes that Stratford alone now needs 475 properties to be constructed every year between 2008 and 2028 in order to keep up with demand and help to avert the fears of a property bubble.
Of course, an area like The International Quarter is a great place to start when addressing demand. With options for a thriving and flexible working environment, there will be more and more businesses moving there over the next few years. It means a higher demand for staff and an increase in the number of people looking to live nearby.
With their eye on the ball, though, it is an opportunity that has not been missed by owners of The International Quarter, as the recently announced Glasshouse Gardens proved.
The development went on sale late in January, and it will offer buyers the chance to get themselves a luxurious property overlooking the Olympic Stadium. Residents will have their own private outdoor space, giving residents spectacular panoramic views across Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the City and Canary Wharf.
Glasshouse Gardens will be constructed over two buildings, with different property types ranging from one to three bedrooms. The development will be completed in 2016, ready for new residents to move into, and helps to address the need for inner city properties, particularly at a time when there is a new business region starting to thrive.
David Joy, LCR's Chief Executive, said: "Glasshouse Gardens at The International Quarter represents a chance to own a part of the Olympic Legacy and to live in a new part of London that is only going to thrive and grow as it develops. These early residents will be an integral part of one of the world's most exciting new neighbourhoods and the benefits will be felt by all for many years to come."
- Tuesday 04 March 2014