In Pictures: Belfast Waterfront preview

More than 150 major event planners gathered at the newly extended 7,000sqm Belfast Waterfront facility on Thursday 28 January for a preview showcase.

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Industry insiders from the UK and Ireland got a chance to see the new development, which will reopen in May 2016 following a £29.5m investment by Belfast City Council (£11m), the European Regional Development Fund, through the EU Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland (£13.3m), and Tourism Northern Ireland (£5.2m).

Guests enjoyed a display of the ‘Best of Belfast’, including food, drinks and entertainment. Once opened, the new Belfast Waterfront is expected to attract 55,000 conference delegates per year and bring in £100m to Belfast by 2020.

"We promised the new Belfast Waterfront would deliver a brand-new experience for up to 5,000 delegates. Today’s preview proved that we can deliver on our promise and left guests in no doubt that Belfast Waterfront is a leading conference and entertainment venue and has both the capacity and capability of hosting many larger international events," said Geoff Fenlon, interim managing director at Belfast Waterfront.

So far, more than 30 international and national events have been confirmed for the Waterfront over the next three years. Big names to already sign up include BBC Good Food Show (14-16 October 2016), the World Credit Union (17-20 July 2016) and the Royal College of Nursing (May 2018.)

More:

Titanic Belfast unveils new properties 

Belfast secures record £13m from events

Belfast targets aggressive hotel expansion

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