Belfast's networking options

Once business in Belfast has been concluded, delegates in search of the renowned craic have an array of evening pub options to choose from, while Belfast's nightclub and bar scene has undergone a transformation in recent years.

Belfast's networking options
Belfast's networking options

The Crown Liquor Saloon, with its ornate tiled Victorian exterior and gas-lit interior is an ideal starting point for a tour of the pubs. A Blue Badge Guide will escort delegates around Belfast's most historic drinking holes including White's Tavern, the Kitchen Bar and McHugh's - the city's oldest building.

The city centre and Cathedral Quarter feature a more up-market, stylish range of bars and nightclubs like Apartment, La Lea, Basement, Mono and The Potthouse.

A visit to the five-star Merchant hotel will enable delegates to sample cocktails from its award-winning bar. Recently voted the World's Best Hotel Bar along with other accolades at the Spirit Awards in New Orleans, the bar at the Merchant can also boast the world's most expensive cocktail - a rum-based Mai Tai.

The Merchant also has a nightclub called Ollie's and a chic private residents and members bar.

Live music is a feature of many of Belfast's pubs and taverns. Hatfield House is an Irish bar with traditional music offering. It has recently been restored to its former glory, with original bar fixtures and ornate ceilings.

The middle floor of Lavery's Bar and Gin Palace is home to the Bunker, which hosts touring and local bands all week. Jude's Bar offers a variety of live rock and soul music, while The Empire located in a converted church, is another entertainment option.

Situated in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter, The Front Page hosts a weekday programme of music from a wide spectrum of live bands.

The live lounge at The Kings Head, meanwhile, features the best of Irish and British live artists every Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.

Organisers looking for a gala-dinner venue should opt for a traditional Irish-themed evening at Belfast Castle.

Guests can enjoy an evening of traditional Irish music and dancing while tasting local produce, overlooking panoramic views of Belfast Lough. Alternatively, there's the Great Hall at Queens University or a show and dinner at the Grand Opera House.

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