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  1. Commercial property
  2. Leading individuals

Who Represents Who

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The ‘highly regardedMark Blair leads the team at A&L Goodbody, which advises on high-profile and high-value commercial property sales and their related refinancings for a mix of purchasers and vendors. Its sector expertise covers retail, residential and energy, and clients include Invest Northern Ireland, McGinnis Group and Gaelectric Developments. Recent highlights include advising investment management firm ICG Longbow on the refinancing of a high-value commercial property backed loan portfolio.

Noted for its cross-border expertise, Arthur Cox Belfast regularly advises on high-end residential development acquisitions and disposals for investment and development firms, most recently advising Neptune Group on the purchase of land in Ballyclare. Lettings and property management is another key area for the group, which provides ongoing advice to Marathon Asset Management on Cityside Retail Park, the Obel Tower and Shane Retail Park. Alastair Todd leads the team. Rowan White is another key name.

Carson McDowell LLP’s ‘market-leading’ practice advises on a broad range of commercial property, including hotels and office space. It also has an extensive track record in large-scale residential and student developments. The team acted for Rockspring Capital on the £46m purchase of Fairhill Shopping Centre and associated properties, and is advising Belfast Harbour Commissioners on a £107m energy-to-waste project. The ‘highly regardedRosemary Carson heads the team, which includes Jeremy Hill and Dawson McConkey, who is particularly adept at renewables-related real estate issues.

The ‘first-rate’ practice at Cleaver Fulton Rankin stands out for its ‘excellent response times, business acumen and value for money’. The practice, which is active across a broad range of sectors including hotels and energy, is advising on the development of the new Titanic Quarter development in Belfast’s city centre. In addition to advising on property acquisitions, the practice also handles commercial leases. Kathryn Collie heads the practice, which includes Jim Houston.

Andrea McIlroy-Rose heads the commercial property team at Pinsent Masons Belfast LLP, which has a strong retail capability; in 2015, it acted for Tristan Capital Partners and Ellandi on their joint acquisitions of shopping centres. Other clients include several REITs and Queen’s University Belfast. Joanna Robinson is also recommended.

The ‘highly regardedPhyllis Agnew leads the property group at Tughans. The team acts on the full range of commercial property acquisitions and related financings, with recent work focusing on the retail sector; in 2015 it advised Obroc Limited Partnership on its £45m sale of Fairhill Shopping Centre. In another highlight the practice acted for investment firm Curlew Capital on the purchase of a former Belfast Metropolitan College building. Other clients include Marks & Spencer, Tesco and Apple Inc. John Mills is also recommended. Tracey Schofield joined A&L Goodbody in May 2016.

An excellent property firm’, C & H Jefferson is active across a range of asset types, including shopping centres, retail parks, offices and industrial estates. It handles commercial acquisitions, construction, development and planning, as well as leases and property management. Mark Tinman is the key name.

Clients of the ‘excellentElliott Duffy Garrett regularly highlight the firm’s ‘very quick response times and detailed advice’. Christine Hamilton heads the team, which is ‘very thorough in its approach’ and regularly acts for major property investment companies on commercial property acquisitions and disposals. The firm also acts for major retailers and landlords on lease agreements.

Recent highlights for Millar McCall Wylie LLP include advising the fixed charge receivers on the high-value sale of three multi-tenanted investment buildings in Belfast; and acting for key client McAleer and Rushe on its acquisition of Norwich Union House. Peter McCall leads the team, which includes Simon Fleming, who is ‘very personable and a pleasure to deal with’, and Andrew Kerr.

Gerard Small heads the real estate practice at John McKee Solicitors, which is noted for its reputation for providing ‘truly exceptional service’. It is particularly active in acquisitions and disposals in the context of administrations, and recently advised Lauderdale Properties on the £6.5m sale of Windsor House. The group also advises on office leases.

Anne Skeggs leads the team at Mills Selig. Anne Marie McAlinden recently advised Northwood investors on the sale of Kilroot Business Park, a part of a high value property portfolio. The team also acted for the vendor on the sale of the Holiday Inn development in Belfast city centre.

TLT advised Kremlin Associates on its acquisition of a multi-occupancy building in central Belfast. Kathryn Forde leads the group.

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Legal Developments in Northern Ireland for Commercial property

  • Parking rights: here to stay? Consent might be the surprising answer 

    In the field of the acquisition of easements by prescription, little has caused more consternation over the last decade or so than the question of whether a right to park cars can be acquired by twenty years user as of right. The types of property capable of being adversely affected range from individual residential units all the way up to major development sites. The establishment of such a right can have a devastating impact on the value of the burdened land.

    - Falcon Chambers

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