Q&A with Rimple Palana
Why did Glandore decide to open in Belfast?
Glandore first opened in Belfast about ten years ago after expanding from our head office in Dublin, and now has two buildings on Arthur Street. Our managing director is extremely fond of Belfast sees it as a thriving city, with huge amounts of talent. This leads to a lot of start-up companies being set up in the city, with not a lot of office space on offer which led to a gap in the market.
What do you like most about working in Belfast?
I used to work in London and it’s great to now live in a city where everything is so close together. It’s so easy to go out after work and meet friends without having to make arrangements in advance because everywhere we want to go in the city centre is within a ten minute walk. I can also walk to work in about thirty minutes which makes such a difference rather than getting the tube.
Over the last couple of years a number of US companies have hired office space as they expand into the Northern Ireland market and their US employees are always shocked by just how much Belfast has to offer and what a fantastic city it is.
Why do you think Belfast is a great city?
The atmosphere in the city is amazing. I think this is because it’s such a different pace of life to a big city like London – everyone is so friendly and has a lot more time. Belfast is unique as when you’re in the city centre you can still see the hills surrounding it, which is something I love as it makes you feel like you’re not in a huge city. Christmas is my favourite time of year as with the market and all the festivities that are going on the city really seems to light up and there a buzz about it.
What’s your secret indulgence in the city?
That would have to be Rita’s on Franklin Street. It’s beautiful inside and is a prime example of how bars in Belfast can compete with those in London and Edinburgh. It also has a great gin menu.
What are your top tips for someone coming into Belfast who hasn’t been in years?
For shopping Victoria Square is a must! There’s so much on offer that you can’t find anywhere else in Northern Ireland. For eating out Mourne Seafood Bar is fantastic, as is the the barge restaurant, Holohan's.
If you’re driving into the city centre I find the Parkmobile app is great for easily using on-street parking. I also recommend the Belfast Bikes for getting around – they are so easy to use – or else just walk everywhere as the city is so compact and there’s so much to see on foot.
What’s next for Glandore?
In the past few months we have renovated our office space. To cater for the increasing amount of start-ups and freelancers in the city we have also introduced a co-workers space where you can hire a single desk on a monthly basis. This allows start-ups to be flexible and if they need to expand we can offer many different options – from shared work spaces to private offices for up to 25 people.
Office spaces are no longer just for employees but also a social and networking space for outside contacts and to reflect this we are developing the 5th floor of Arthur House. This will have a roof terrace (with a retractable roof to allow for the Belfast weather) and a space to host networking and business events.
Glandore is an Irish, family owned and managed company offering design led, flexible office, coworking and meeting space in Belfast city centre. To enquire about hiring a meeting room or office space please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 028 9044 7100.