A leading international law firm is to be the first occupier at GSS Development’s 2 Semple Street Grade A office in Edinburgh’s Exchange District.
Womble Bond Dickinson LLP (WBD), ranked in the UK’s top 20, has agreed to take the entire first floor (7357 sq ft) of the 39,347 sq ft building as it ramps up its presence in the capital.
The letting follows on from a series of high level hires in Edinburgh, as WBD continues to expand its presence in Scotland following the opening of its first Edinburgh office in 2017.
The Edinburgh team focuses on delivering legal services to the Real Estate, Financial Services and Energy and Power Renewables sectors. The office has continued to grow, with recent recruitment adding new service lines including Jonny Williams, partner and UK head, Caroline Stevenson, Legal Director, Natasha Brownlee, Managing Associate (all financial services), and Construction (Lisa Dromgoole).
John Ralph, Partner and Head of WBD’s Edinburgh office, said: “We are excited to be moving into 2 Semple Street which offers a high quality environment for our team and our clients, and the additional facilities necessary to support both a productive workplace, and health and well-being.
“An increasing number of our clients are keen that we have a larger Edinburgh presence, so that we are on hand when they need us. Our growth will continue, and we look forward to further arrivals into the Edinburgh team, serving clients from this fabulous base. We are keen to speak to anyone who might be interested in joining us during this exciting phase of our plans.”
Paul Stevenson, GSS Director, said: “I am delighted that we have attracted a legal firm of international repute such as Womble Bond Dickinson to become our first tenant at 2 Semple Street. The Exchange District is already the preferred location for a number of top law firms and WBD will feel very at home in an excellent location which fits the requirements of a commercial and corporate practice with ambitious expansion plans.
“With a limited supply of Grade A office space in Edinburgh and strong demand, 2 Semple Street is the only readily available option for businesses who have extra space requirements or are looking to upgrade into modern and efficient accommodation.”
The 2 Semple Street building recently received an accolade from the British Council for Offices’ when it was recognised as Scotland’s best Commercial Workplace.
Judges said the award was for the ingenuity shown in bringing to life a challenging listed site in the city centre and “by the change delivered to the core layout of the building which features adjustable floor plates that maximise natural daylight throughout the space”.
Angela Lowe, senior director of CBRE, joint agents, said: “The contemporary and sustainable office environment at 2 Semple Street will appeal to forward thinking businesses who promote employee wellness and understand that a high quality workplace can be valuable in attracting and retaining staff.”
Chris Cuthbert, director at CuthbertWhite, joint agents, added: “2 Semple Street’s innovate design has rightly been recognised by the British Council of Offices’ and offers an excellent proposition for businesses who wish to be at the centre of Edinburgh’s business community.”