Avoca to open food hall in luxury Ballsbridge development

Dylan McGrath will also open a new restaurant in Dublin 4 centre

The Avoca chain of luxury retail outlets and cafes is to open a food hall at a new business, leisure and residential centre to be unveiled shortly by the Comer Group in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.

Restaurateur Dylan McGrath has also agreed rental terms for a new restaurant in the same development, known as One Ballsbridge.

The two dining facilities and others in the pipeline will be located on the ground floor of three seven- and eight-storey glazed blocks, which will also accommodate high-quality offices, a range of high-end stores, a leisure centre, 88 apartments and 225 car parking spaces.

A new streetscape will link Pembroke and Shelbourne roads, where 2,116sq m (22,776sq ft) of retail space will help create a distinctive new dining and shopping precinct.

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Avoca has agreed a rent in the region of €250,000 per annum for a 743sq m (8,000sq ft) food hall, which is expected to open next March. The outlet will be the second retail business to be launched by Avoca – the other was in Dunboyne last April – since the Pratt family sold the Avoca business to the US catering group Aramark for a figure reported to be €64 million.

‘Right mix’

Two of the additional nine retail units in the Ballsbridge scheme have already been let and there is much interest in the remaining units, according to Louise Donnelly of Cushman & Wakefield. These are aimed at the top-end of the retail market and could end up as fashion boutiques, jewellers, hair and beauty salons or further food outlets. “My job,” she said, “ is to get the right mix for an exceptional D4 location.”

Dylan McGrath is already committed to opening a 418sq m (4,500sq ft) restaurant in a different building to the one earmarked for Avoca at a rent in excess of €538/sq m (€50/sq ft). He is currently operating two restaurants in the south inner city: Fade Street Social on Fade Street, and Rustic Stone on South Great George’s Street.

The Comer development is located on a 2.02-acre former Veterinary College site originally bought during the property boom by developer Ray Grehan for an incredible €171.5 million. After the property crash, the Comers bought it for €22.5 million – a discount of 87 per cent.

The Comer scheme is expected to interlink with the adjoining 6.8-acre Ballsbridge site where Joe O’Reilly’s Chartered Land is building the early phases of an apartment scheme that will be among the most expensive in the Dublin market.