Signature Living, the hotel operator behind The Shankly Hotel and 30 James Street, has now been given the go ahead to transform Belfast’s landmark Scottish Mutual building into a George Best themed hotel.
The move will mark the debut hotel in Belfast, Northern Ireland for the ambitious, fast-growing hotel group, headed up by founder Lawrence Kenwright.
The Liverpool developer is said to be planning five new hotels in Belfast over the next two years, with the George Best property the first one to be given the green light.
The agreement was negotiated by IMG on behalf of the George Best Company, owned by George’s sister and brother-in-law Barbara and Norman McNarry.
“We are thrilled to support this exciting project knowing that George would have loved to see his name immortalised in a hotel where he would have also enjoyed staying,” said Barbara McNarry.
Located in Belfast’s landmark Scottish Mutual Building, the George Best Hotel will celebrate the career and glamorous style of the man Pele famously described as “the greatest player in the world.”
“Signature Living is incredibly excited to be working with Barbara and Norman McNarry on bringing the George Best Hotel to Belfast,” says Kenwright. “George Best’s story is legendary, and we look forward to celebrating his journey at this new hotel development in his hometown.”
Founded by Lawrence Kenwright, Signature Living launched onto the market in 2008, and now operates four hotels in Liverpool, including the Shankly Hotel inspired by football manager Bill Shankly.
30 James Street is another one of the brand’s iconic properties, which was previously the headquarters of the White Star Line – famous owners of the RMS Titanic.
Now the group is ramping up expansion, and is currently scouting buildings in Manchester as well as developing Cardiff’s historic Coal Exchange into a 200-bed boutique hotel.
Plans were also unveiled to convert Crumlin Road Courthouse in Belfast into a hotel with a £15m investment.
Kenwright adds: “Signature Living has a solid track record of delivering unique hotel concepts, and we envisage the George Best Hotel being as popular as the Shankly Hotel in Liverpool which celebrates the life and career of one of the most successful football managers in history.”