Savills: Glasgow food & beverage openings strongest in five years

17th January 2023 | Jack Oliver

The Glasgow food and beverage (F&B) market saw 23 new openings in 2022, the highest in five years, reports Savills.

The real estate firm’s research shows sector activity was 15% ahead of 2021, with a total of 20,000 sq ft of F&B space opening in Glasgow city centre.

Savills said that independent operators continued to dominate, with 65% of transactions attributed to local entrepreneurs, with notable openings including Fat Lobster, Gost, Devil of Brooklyn, August House, and Bao.

National brands still made their mark, with Cosmo, Fat Hippo and Mowgli newcomers to the city.

Savills also reported that bars rather than restaurants proved to be more prevalent in their hunt for space, as Innis & Gunn opened a new taphouse on West Nile Street and The Alchemist launched a new cocktail bar on George Square.

John Menzies, retail director at Savills in Glasgow, said: “The five year picture of transaction volumes illustrate the bounce back from Covid-19 and is a strong vote of confidence in the ability of our largest cities to evolve and recover. 2023 promises to be another busy year in Glasgow, with well-funded occupiers retaining their appetite for the best located properties in Scotland`s largest city. 

“These sentiments may sound surprising given the acutely challenging trading picture at present, and the F&B sectors exposure to rising utility costs, the cost of living crisis and the impact of train strikes on city centre visits. With many operators reporting trade down 25% on expectation over the Christmas period, confidence to commit to new properties at the moment is predicated on an underlying optimism that the economic climate will improve as we move past the current year, into 2024 and beyond.”

Looking ahead to 2023, Savills predicts that Glasgow will continue to see strong occupier demand. The firm also believes that the majority of deals will take place in the latter part of the year with occupiers looking to ride out challenging trading conditions.


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