The only way is up for Southbank

November 14, 2016

Jason Haxton looks at the evolution of the iconic London area.

This time ten years ago, the Southbank was enjoying a period of spectacular renaissance. The London Eye had been in place for a few years, attracting tourists and Londoners alike to ride high into the sky and admire the views of London and the Royal Festival Hall was undergoing an extensive refurbishment programme.

Fast forward to 2016 and the Southbank has firmly established itself as one of the most popular locations in London. Boasting riverside views, proximity to a major transport hub, a fantastic concert hall and street entertainment, it has everything going for it. Yet what is so often overlooked is its diverse array of restaurants, bars and cafes.

Lunson Mitchenall won the mandate for the Southbank Board in 2004 and since then we have overseen the creation of 15 restaurant units. Although 15 seems like a fairly modest number, demand for these units outstrips anything we have seen in other locations across the capital. Rent has almost tripled in this period, with units now commanding £115/ sq ft.


This phenomenal demand has not only increased rents, but has also seen Wagamama submit plans to extend their unit under Hungerford Bridge. The proposals are further proof of just how popular the area has become and how brands such as Wagamama are considering all options to remain in such a sought-after location.

So what does the next ten years hold? Although we are not in possession of a crystal ball, it is clear that the Southbank remains a success story. With development proposals in motion, we expect further rent increases and even more competition to hold onto the top spots at this prime location.

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