22 February 2021/ Area guides

Office leasing guide: Aberdeen

Offices to rent in Aberdeen

Scotland’s third most populous city, Aberdeen, is located on the north east coast of the country. It’s sandwiched between the wild Cairngorms National Park, which is double the size of the Lake District, and the ruggedly beautiful coastline. Around 228,000 people call the Aberdeen area home, and it’s one of the largest commercial centres in northern Scotland and the highlands. You can reach other key Scottish cities like Glasgow and Edinburgh easily, as well as UK hubs like Manchester and London, as Aberdeen has great transport links.

Historically, Aberdeen was known as a key centre for fishing, paper making, ship building and textiles. But since huge reserves of North Sea crude oil were discovered off the coast in the 1970s, Aberdeen has transformed into one of the world’s offshore oil capitals. You’ll find one of the world’s busiest commercial heliports here and the city’s seaport handles thousands of tonnes of goods every day.

There’s plenty of local talent to recruit from in Aberdeen, as the city is home to two universities: the 15th century University of Aberdeen, which is the fifth oldest English-speaking university in the world, and modern Robert Gordon University. There are a number of other specialist research and education facilities too, including the Scottish Agricultural College, Marine Laboratory Aberdeen and Rowett Research Institute.

Want to find out more about living and working in Aberdeen? Here’s everything you need to know.

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Notable business areas in Aberdeen

The area around Old Aberdeen and the University of Aberdeen is home to a number of notable research and development institutions, including the Scottish Fish Immunology Research Centre and the Electronics Research Group. To the west, close to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, are others, including The Rowett Institute. Some of the city’s brightest minds can be found here as they work hard to further knowledge in a range of subjects.

Around Aberdeen’s main port, you’ll find lots of important businesses, including those operating in the engineering, energy, marine and logistics industries. Many are involved in the prominent offshore oil business, making this waterside location highly convenient. On the other side of the River Dee, the West & East Tullos Industrial Estates have a number of automotive occupants, as well as energy and engineering businesses.

Aberdeen has excellent transport links

There are three train stations in Aberdeen

The main station is located in the centre of the city just off the main A93. Services operated by CrossCountry, LNER, ScotRail and Caledonian Sleeper stop here, so you can travel to relatively local destinations like Glasgow and Edinburgh or settle in for a 13-hour journey to Penzance. There are two other suburban stations: Dyce to the north and Portlethen to the south.

Aberdeen’s bus services run regularly across the city

A number of operators including First and Stagecoach run local services in Aberdeen. The city’s main bus station is located just off Market Street on Union Square, close to the main shopping area. You can also catch national services operated by megabus and National Express, which can take you to cities across Scotland and the UK.

Aberdeen is well connected by road

The A90 and A96 connect Aberdeen with nearby towns and cities including Dundee and Perth. Follow the A90 south and you’ll reach the M90 at Perth, which you can follow all the way down to Edinburgh.

The closest airport to Aberdeen is 20 minutes from the city centre

Aberdeen Airport is a short drive from the city and it’s located in the Dyce area. You can also travel by bus or train from central Aberdeen, which will take around 50 minutes. From here, you can fly to other cities in the UK including London (a convenient option given a train journey will take 10 hours) and lots of European destinations.

Offices to let in Aberdeen

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Aberdeen has lots of useful business amenities

You’ll find lots of business-focused hotels in Aberdeen

From upmarket options like The Marcliffe Hotel and Spa and Malmaison Aberdeen to affordable bases like Premier Inn and Residence Inn by Marriott, Aberdeen has something for every business traveller. There are hotels with historic character like Inn At The Park and modern ones including Mercure Aberdeen Caledonian, so there’s something for every taste and budget.

Aberdeen’s restaurants serve culinary delights for everyone

Hosting a casual client meeting? Chat over lunch at café-bistro The Square, sample local seafood dishes at Moonfish Café or indulge in traditional Italian at La Lombarda – rumoured to be the UK’s oldest Italian eatery. Looking for somewhere upmarket? Try Granite Park, which serves fresh British cuisine, The Esselmont or stop for a bite at Chez Mal Brasserie. And if you’re just looking to chat over coffee, The Cult of Coffee or The Craftsman Company are just two of the city’s excellent options.

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There are a number of meeting rooms and event spaces in Aberdeen

Whether you’re hosting a large gathering or need a smaller space for a meeting, Aberdeen has plenty of options. If you need a bigger venue, places like the King’s Conference Centre at Aberdeen University, the sea view Beach Ballroom or Aberdeen Life Centre are excellent options. And if you’re keeping the gathering small, try out Café AHOY! and The Silver Fin Building.

Aberdeen has plenty of handy facilities

Love to stay active? There is an abundance of fitness facilities in Aberdeen. Familiar chains like PureGym and Snap Fitness have branches in the city, as do high-end fitness providers like Nuffield Health. You’ll also find lots of independent gyms in the area including Quay Fitness and Results Gym, where you can get a sweat on in a way that suits you.

And if you fancy a bit of shopping, Aberdeen has a number of retail areas. Union Square shopping centre is where many of the city’s high street brands can be found, as are nearby Union Street and George Street. You can also visit Trinity Shopping Centre or enclosed mall the Bon Accord Centre to get your fix of retail therapy.

Offices, serviced offices and co-working spaces to rent in Aberdeen

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Notable office tenants 

  • Aberdeen Asset Management
  • Farmfoods
  • Subsea7
  • Leiths Group
  • Abbot Group Limited

Key agents operating in Aberdeen

  • FG Burnett
  • J&E Shepherd
  • CBRE
  • Ryden
  • Knight Frank LLP

Interesting facts about Aberdeen

  • The world’s first floating windfarm, Equinor’s Hywind Pilot Park, is located off the coast of Aberdeen.
  • The city has earned the nickname of ‘The Silver City’ as many of its granite buildings are rich in mica, a mineral that glimmers silver in the sun.
  • Aberdeen has the second highest number of patents per person in the UK, showing there are plenty of innovative people all across the city.
  • 17 whiskey distilleries can be found across Aberdeen – the highest of any UK city.
  • Doric is the city’s native dialect – an offshoot of Scots that is extremely distinct from that spoken in other regions.