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Being the capital city of Wales, Cardiff is a popular tourist and shopping destination. The city is strategically located 240km (150 miles) west of London, 175km (109 miles) southwest of Birmingham, 69km (43 miles) west of Bristol and 68km (42 miles) east of Swansea.
Cardiff is well connected via roads, rail and air networks.
The M4 motorway connects Cardiff to Bristol and London through junctions 29,30 and 32. Cardiff Central is a mainline with regular services to Temple Meads in Bristol, New Street in Birmingham, Paddington in London and Piccadilly in Manchester, where the fastest travel time is 48 mins, 2 hrs, 2 hrs 4 mins and 3hrs 25mins respectively. Cardiff also hosts Cardiff Central and Cardiff Queen Street, two of the busiest railway stations in Wales with almost 12.5 million passengers passing through annually.
Cardiff International Airport is located 12 miles to the southwest of Cardiff city centre and provides services to a number of national and international destinations.
Cardiff has established itself as one of the UK’s premier business locations, attracting numerous national and multinational corporations, including Deloitte, Tesco, Admiral Group and Lloyds Banking Group. In recent years, the strength of Cardiff’s fintech cluster also makes the city a prime location for fintech businesses globally. Between 2018 and 2019, the fintech industry in Cardiff and the South East of Wales contributed 2 billion pound Gross Added Value to the Cardiff Capital Regional economy.
Cardiff has one of the strongest and most extensive retail offerings in the UK, ranked as one of the best large cities for shopping in the UK. High street fashion ranging from H&M to River Island can be found readily in St David’s shopping centre. The Victorian and Edwardian arcades are just a 5 mins walk away from the IRO property. The classical architecture of the arcades coupled with boutiques and cafes adds to the charm of the area.
City centre retail floor space in Cardiff is approximately 2 million sq ft of which around half is within St David’s Centre. The retail core in the city centre of Cardiff is largely concentrated around Queen Street, the Hayes commercial areas, and the city’s shopping centres.
Cardiff benefits from a large catchment area given that the city has 3 universities, 3 business and law schools, a graduate workforce of 30% and a population of 1.4 million who live within a 30 mins commute (Business Wales). Further, the city was also an important tourist destination prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is the most popular destination in Wales with 21.3 million visitors, bringing in an approximate spend of £1.3 billion to the local economy in 2017 (Cardiff City Council).