Rooftop restaurant operator announced for Central Bank’s former HQ

Two-floor central Dublin venue to be taken by businessman behind Irish PF Chang’s

A hospitality and dining area on the top two floors of the old Central Bank building has been leased for in excess of €1 million a year with the operator planning to create three venues at the Dame Street location.

The venue at the Sam Stephenson-designed building – now known as Central Plaza – will be operated by Zafar Shah, the businessman responsible for bringing the PF Chang's brand of Asian cuisine to the Dundrum Town Centre shopping complex.

Mervyn Ellis of BNP Paribas Real Estate confirmed that Shah, who also holds franchises for Philliez Kitchen and Paul bakery, has signed a lease for the top two floors of the building.

A joint venture between the property companies Hines and the Peterson Group is developing the rooftop venue as part of a wider scheme incorporating 12,500 sq m (134,500 sq ft) of retail, food and beverage, and office space.

The new restaurant space is set to provide diners with 360-degree views of Dublin and the surrounding landscape, from the Wicklow Mountains to Howth Head. The inclusion of a perimeter walkway on the building's ninth floor will, weather permitting, also allow visitors to take in the views from outside.

The top floor, level 10, will accommodate Central Plaza’s main dining space across an area of 830 sq m (8,900 sq ft). The level below will house the reception area, bar and back-of-house facilities.

It is understood that the Ely restaurant group and the Italian chain Carluccio's had each expressed an interest in locating on the ground floor of Central Plaza; the building is due to be completed at the end of this year, with the first tenant openings expected in early 2020.

Most of the office space is now leased to the flexible-workspace provider WeWork and to AmTrust Financial. The whole complex will house upward of 1,500 workers across all uses.

Ronald Quinlan

Ronald Quinlan

Ronald Quinlan is Acting Property Editor of The Irish Times