Retreat in style: old meets new at Academy Residencies

Dave HallByDave Hall

Retreat in style: old meets new at Academy Residencies

Clean rooms, reasonable food, and flexible meeting space – Academy Residences have the lot in an atmospheric listed building.

Four years ago they opened the Academy Newland Park campus. And they’ll be at CRE 2017 to tell us about another: Academy St Albans in London Colney.

While Newland Park can take up to 900 people the St Albans campus will provide accommodation for 250, eventually rising to 400.

But don’t get the idea that your group can only apply with big numbers. Academy take groups from ten upwards, providing full-board accommodation, meeting, conference and social and activity facilities all year round.

The new campus is an elegant listed Victorian building – originally All Saints Pastoral Care convent. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Westminster acquired it in 1973 and adapted it to modern requirements, taking care to retain its original charm. With mostly twin rooms, a range of indoor and outdoor spaces, sports facilities and a beautiful central quad garden it is the perfect place for groups to relax and socialise.

Among recent visitors have been church groups, school parties, choirs, sports teams, a brass band, athletes and charity conferences.

Dr Barney Skrentny, the senior leader of City Gates Church, London, said: ‘Our church members are from all walks of life – yet Newlands Park satisfied everyone. As an organiser of weekends away for decades I know what I want: clean rooms, reasonable food, and flexible meeting space that I can prepare in any way I want to. Having used many well-known venues I was surprised this was the best.’

Academy Residences are on stand S56 at CRE 2017

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Dave Hall

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