The building where the Titanic was designed is to be turned into a boutique hotel.

The Harland and Wolff headquarters and drawing offices on Queen’s Island, Belfast, was the control centre for one of the largest shipyards in the world early in the last century during a golden age for shipbuilding.

Now the vacant building is to be transformed using a STG4.9 million ($A9.62 million) Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grant.

“We will safeguard the drawing offices for future generations and unlock the commercial potential of the entire building as a boutique hotel with heritage at its core,” says Kerrie Sweeney, chief executive of the Titanic Foundation.

“This is a truly unique and authentic project for Belfast.”

The former headquarters building is where Belfast workers created and designed more than 1000 ships including the White Star Olympic Class Liners – Olympic, Titanic and Britannic – and naval warships such as HMS Belfast.

In April 1912, on its maiden voyage from Southampton to New York, the Titanic struck an iceberg in the north Atlantic and sank, with the loss of around 1500 lives.