Might have to try to use U++ with Visual Studio for the first time.
It is quite useful to use Visual Studio just for debugging, as 'external debugger' (defined in build method alt+f5).
As for theide looking ugly, I guess it is something we should concentrate on this year... My prefered idea is to create independent team for this, retaining the basic codebase (like builders, maybe CodeEditor) and build something new and shiny on that (while perhaps retaining current theide as it is).
If you are speaking about using Visual Studio for debugging, that is quite simple (or it was last time I have done that, which admittedly is 5+ years ago): You can just open resulting .exe file in Visual Studio. You can pass it on commandline too, that is what Alt+F5 does. You just have to fill something like 'msvc' in the build method's "External debugger" field...