Manchester Airport in the UK has unveiled plans for 27 new eateries and retail units in Terminal 2, as part of its £1.3bn (US$1.6bn) transformation program.
The extended departure lounge will feature a food market serving a variety of world cuisines and quick eats for those who prefer a more casual dining experience, alongside a boutique high-street-style shopping area complete with a champagne bar and premium brands, artisan cafes and a brasserie.
The shopping zone, to be known as The Avenue, will have a vibrant and airy feel. Each storefront will open onto airfield views, with plenty of passenger seating for added comfort. The plans were revealed as the airport began the tendering process for more than 12 units in May 2023, with a view to announcing the successful applicants by April 2024. The airport is searching for retailers selling toys, fashion, accessories and travel essentials to take up units in this area and is seeking out partners who will showcase the north of England in their units, through the design of their stores and the range of products on offer.
A blend of regional and national brands is expected to operate the new units, in keeping with the areas of the terminal that are already open to passengers. The first phase of the project saw several Mancunian favorites taking up residence in Terminal Two, from burger and shake chain Archie’s, Italian restaurant San Carlo and coffee brand Pot Kettle Black, to Manchester brewers Joseph Holt and Seven Bro7hers. They were joined by familiar brands like Costa Coffee, WHSmith, Pret A Manger and Wagamama.
The expanded retail and restaurant offering forms part of the transformation program’s second phase, which will see the original Terminal 2 building remodeled and upgraded, in sync with the recently opened terminal extension. Work is expected to be completed by 2025. More than 80% of the airport’s passengers are expected to travel through Terminal 2 once the second phase of the transformation program is complete.
Richard Jackson, retail director at Manchester Airport, said, “We are well aware that our guests’ holidays start at the airport and we want them to enjoy their time here – whether that means sipping craft beer brewed at the airport in a bar overlooking the airfield, or eating an artisan pizza. We already have a great range of food and drink options in Terminal 2, with local brands that create a strong sense of place, but we’re looking to build on that with all-new offerings, including a champagne bar and a market-hall-style food court.”
He continued, “We’re also seeking retail partners who will bring a high-class offering, tailored to the needs of the traveling public. The first phase of the project saw some exciting brands come on board, but we’re now keen to build on that and provide a more varied and comprehensive retail experience to cater for the tastes of the millions of passengers who will pass through the terminal’s doors.”
Mark Flanagan, owner of Pot Kettle Black, said, “Opening an outlet in Manchester Airport together with our partners HMSHost UK has been an incredible experience. We started in Manchester nine years ago in just small premises in Barton Arcade. Now, through the branch in the airport, we’re reaching customers who come from all over the world and we’re even seeing international customers visiting our city-center branches because they’ve been to the one in the airport. Back in 2014 we never thought we’d be an international brand but the airport branch is helping us do that.”
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