The city of Birmingham, located in the West Midlands, is the second-largest economic center of the U.K. behind London. With a population of more than 1 million, Birmingham is an economic powerhouse and home to a rapidly changing and diverse series of industries. Although the city's roots are firmly planted in industrial manufacturing, today Birmingham is known for its vibrant retail market and world-class scientific and academic research. The city is also home to a burgeoning entertainment and media production industry, and the BBC maintains a strong presence in the city.
A thriving commercial center
Birmingham boasts one of the most resilient economies in the U.K. As such, the city is home to several large corporations, including Jaguar International and the Goodrich Corporation. In addition to its thriving commercial manufacturing sector, Birmingham is also a dynamic financial center, with many international organizations maintaining a strong presence in the city, such as Deloitte, Deutsche Bank and Zurich Financial Services. Individuals traveling to the city on business can take advantage of Birmingham serviced apartments, many of which are conveniently located within easy reach of these international organizations.
Retail businesses make up a significant part of Birmingham's economy, as the city boasts several major shopping centers. The Bullring, one of the largest mall complexes in the U.K., attracts millions of consumers every year, and features some of the best-known retail outlets in Great Britain.
The business travel and tourism markets are also extremely important to Birmingham's economy. With several major conference and events facilities, including the International Convention Centre, the National Exhibition Centre and Symphony Hall, Birmingham's tourism and business travel market represents approximately 42 percent of these sectors in the entirety of the U.K.
A cultural melting pot
In addition to being a strong economic center, Birmingham is also a richly cultural city. Individuals staying in Birmingham serviced apartments can take advantage of a range of activities during their visit.
Home to many of Great Britain's most famous musical groups, including Black Sabbath, the Electric Light Orchestra and The Moody Blues, it should come as little surprise that Birmingham is a fantastic city in which to explore music. Birmingham's Symphony Hall has gained worldwide acclaim over the years as a center of excellence in the performing arts, and regularly hosts world-class theater companies, ballet groups and musicians. Concerts are also held frequently at Birmingham Town Hall, a magnificent example of Classical architecture that dates back to the early 19th century.
Of course, as a thriving 21st-century city, Birmingham also has a lot to offer in terms of contemporary nightlife. Clubs such as the 02 Academy and The Mailbox often host famous bands and performing artists, and the city also boasts several of the U.K.'s largest festivals, including the Birmingham International Jazz Festival and Birmingham Comedy Festival, the latter of which has been headlined by some of the best-known comedians in the country.
In stark contrast to its beginnings as a center of the Industrial Revolution, modern-day Birmingham is also one of the most picturesque metropolises in the U.K. The city boasts more than 8,000 acres of parkland and green spaces, including Sutton Park, the largest open-air nature reserve in Europe. Guests staying at Birmingham serviced apartments may find wandering around the Winterbourne Botanical Garden an ideal way to unwind, as this sprawling green space is located within easy reach of the city center. A short distance from the city itself, visitors can explore beautifully preserved national parks such as Woodgate Valley Country Park and Lickey Hills Country Park, both of which offer the perfect alternative to the hustle and bustle of this dynamic urban center.
Whether they plan to visit for business or pleasure, travelers heading to Birmingham will find a world of opportunities awaits them. Staying in Birmingham serviced apartments is the perfect way to experience world-class luxury in the heart of one of the most vibrant cities in the U.K.