Many people rightly associate Wales with idyllic coastlines, mountain ranges and a rural economy. Although this is certainly true, the Welsh economy is also highly business focussed. As such, office spaces are available to rent in nearly all parts of the country. Most of the major Welsh employers are located in South Wales, close to Cardiff, but you can also find business parks and office blocks in both Mid Wales and further north. Private developers have built office spaces all over the country and, as you might expect, these tend to be centred on the areas with the greatest population densities.

North Wales

If you think that North Wales, with its mountains and farmland, is no place to find office space, then you might need to reconsider. With excellent communications to the northwest of England including the cities of Liverpool and Manchester, North Wales has been the location of choice for some UK wide enterprises. A good example of the sort of the modern facilities now offered in the region would be the North Wales Business Park, which is situated near to Abergele in Conwy, and covers a site of no less than 37 acres. The current structures have been designed with flexibility in mind, so that a wide range of suites can be offered to suit all sorts of business ventures. The site also has space and the planning permission necessary to build bespoke offices that could accommodate much larger enterprises which have specialist needs.

Only a few miles from Abergele, there is another office hub at Conwy named Riverside Business Park. Here, both large open plan offices are available to rent along with much smaller units that are as small as 10 square metres, suited to a handful of employees. Much of the office development in this area has been driven by the new government offices which are located at Llandudno Junction. This is the site that the Welsh Assembly chose to use for its regional offices.

North Wales does not just offer general office spaces. It has some places that are specialised, too. Technology House, in Rhewl Ruthin, is a good example. Here, the offices have a focus that is designed to attract hi-tech businesses. Close to the border with England, there are business parks in Mold and Flint. Deeside Business Park, just a few miles from Chester, is a large site which is home to manufacturing businesses as well as other hi-tech sectors, such as the aerospace industry, pharmaceuticals and food science.

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Mid Wales

Generally speaking, Mid Wales has the least expensive office spaces to rent. This is due to the relative lack of communications - both road and rail - that the region suffers from compared to other parts of the country. Nevertheless, there are some excellent business centres that are worth looking into. The Severn Business Centre is a prime example. Located in Welshpool, not far from the border with England, the site offers offices from about 50 square metres up to 200 square metres. Recently refitted, the facilities are excellent and include telephony systems as well as on-site technical staff. A little further down the road is Offa's Dyke Business Park which has already seen an investment of over £2.5m and is focussed on serving SMEs. Further investment in this part of Mid Wales is expected following a funding announcement from the Competitiveness European Regional Development Fund.

In west Mid Wales, Aberystwyth is the major administrative centre. The BBC and Welsh Water are both important employers in the town. Loveden House is located centrally, close to the railway station, and it offers traditional office spaces to rent along with virtual offices, shared offices and even hot-desking services.

South Wales

The three major cities in South Wales are Cardiff, the capital, Swansea and Newport. The furthest west of these is Swansea which boasts a myriad of business parks and office centres. According to the Welsh Government, Swansea has undergone a dramatic economic change in the last two decades with growth generated by a major investment programme. This means that the city has now transformed into a modern, service sector economy. Over 80 per cent of employees in the city now work for hi-tech and service based companies. Business Centre Swansea and Swansea Creative Hub both occupy prime sites in the city near to the coast and there is also a serviced office centre run by Regus in the vicinity. Having recently undergone a major refurbishment, the last of these is focussed on attracting more hi-tech businesses.

Cardiff and Newport, which are near neighbours, have similar information-based economies to Swansea. The Centre for Business, in Newport, and Rombourne Business Centre, in Cardiff, both occupy central locations in their respective cities. Each has a wide range of office suites that are suited to both hi-tech firms and those which are focussed on serving the government, which is seated in Cardiff.

Situated, between the two cities is Cardiff Gate Business Park which offers easy access to the M4 motorway. Expect to pay more for serviced offices in South Wales than you might elsewhere in the country. However, even in the capital rented office space can be found to suit most firms' budgets and it remains highly competitive compared with much of the rest of the UK.

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