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Creating a gym fit for high-end student accommodation.
Luxury student accommodation is becoming more and more common across the world. Increasingly, students are looking for somewhere to live that is a part of a lifestyle, rather than just a place to stay.
The Nido Collection in West Hampstead, London, has responded by creating student accommodation that takes its inspiration from high-end hotel chains and members’ clubs. An onsite gym is an important part of the package, and Escape has helped to make sure it matches the rest of the facility on quality and performance.
A home away from home
A home for students from 65 countries studying at more than 50 institutions, The Nido Collection offers a comfortable ‘home away from home’, complete with a host of facilities. There’s an outdoor courtyard, games room and lounge, cinema screening room, onsite laundry and concierge service.
The Nido Collection is certainly setting the benchmark for student accommodation. They have the most important accreditations in the sector and have some very prestigious awards, including the Design Curl Award for luxury halls of residence and the RESI Award for Student Accommodation Operator of the Year.
The rationale behind Nido is a desire to help each student make the most of their education experience, by taking away external pressures. Their onsite gym recognises that while students may want to work out, the pressures of a busy timetable don’t always give them the time they need. An onsite gym that’s open 24/7 makes it easy for students to access the facilities whenever it’s convenient.
Nido asked Escape to help them design and equip the gym. Nido had some expectations of what they wanted to achieve – but Escape’s contribution was crucial in helping to refine those ideas. The Nido team quickly recognised Escape as a provider of fitness concepts, as well as a provider of superior equipment and training. And that’s exactly the mix of services they were looking for.
Achieving a lot from a small space
When deciding how best to use the available space there were two main practical issues to negotiate. First, the space itself was an awkwardly-shaped 40 square metres. This gave the Escape design team a bigger challenge in terms of fitting the optimal range of equipment in, without making the space feel cramped.
Second, the Nido team wanted to include the sort of state-of-the-art facilities that their exceptional reputation deserved. They wanted to keep their students up-to-date with the latest fitness trends.
The Escape design team created a series of visuals to demonstrate different options for the new-look training space. The room shape was long and thin, so Escape had to work within that space to create a functional training area that still included everything Nido required, without compromises.
To provide the most versatile range for their students, the Nido team chose functional training equipment including Dumbbells, Kettlebells, TIYR, Plyosoft Boxes and a TRX, and an Octagon ISO frame with rope pulley, dip station, pull up station, catch rack and weight horns.
The transformation of the gym and exceptional use of a small and awkward space was very well received. Previously, the Nido gym had been very cardio-focused, with two treadmills, an elliptical and an upright bike. But Escape worked hard to ease the transition to a more functional model. Even with the introduction of the Octagon ISO frame, and all the new equipment, Nido were still able to keep all their cardio equipment, apart from one treadmill.
A seamless journey
The Nido team described working with Escape Fitness as a ‘seamless journey’ to design a bespoke gym – addressing the needs of both cardio and functional fitness focused students.
“The Escape team was fantastic, very professional and their work swift and impeccable,” says Zanna Wharfe, Head of Customer Experience at The Nido Collection. “They listened to our goals and the needs of our residents and designed a fantastic space for them - and staff, who can often be found there after work - to use.
“Any issues we had or extra equipment we wanted to order was dealt with quickly and efficiently. I’d definitely turn to Escape again should I have another gym to redesign in the future.”
Creating gym spaces – in any space
Escape has the expertise and experience to design effective gyms from almost any available space. In the education, multi-housing and hospitality sectors in particular, this also means ensuring that the gym is suitable for 24/7 use when no trainers are present.
If you are responsible for developing any kind of gym space and would like to discuss what we can do for you, please get in touch. Email us at [email protected] or call:
UK: +44 (0)1733 313 535
USA: +1 (614)-706-4462
Germany: +49 (0)2921 590 10 70