Bentley House – Fresh Design
Bentley House is a brand-new student accommodation residence in Birmingham city centre which welcomed its first residents in September this year. Boasting a fresh and contemporary design, Bentley House is within easy reach of Aston University, Birmingham City University, Birmingham University and University College Birmingham.
Work on the 534-room development began in September 2015. The structural frame was completed 11 months later, with the building made watertight in February 2017 ahead of completion in August 2017. Leading construction and property development group Pochin’s acted as main contractor for the project, which was undertaken on behalf of renowned student accommodation provider, Global Student Accommodation (GSA).
Offering a wide choice of high-specification rooms including en-suite cluster flats and studio apartments, Bentley House is managed by The Student Housing Company, GSA’s UK operating brand. Thought leaders in this exciting growth sector, GSA build and operate high quality student accommodation in exceptional locations internationally. Placing the student experience at the heart of every project, each building is designed specifically with the needs of students in mind. Tim Mitchell, Head of Real Estate at GSA, spoke to Premier Construction about Bentley House:
“I’ve been involved with a number of schemes in this vicinity and it’s amazing how the east side of Birmingham has regenerated, both as a result of student accommodation and other investment from the city council.
“As a business, every year we try and move our approach on in terms of creating great communities. From the moment you arrive at Bentley House you can see generous management suite areas to help deliver an award-winning service. We’re very focused on building innovation and that can be seen here with the creation of very different common rooms and communal areas, providing the perfect setting for students to mingle and form communities.
“When you move into the building itself, our residents have what feels like a normal city apartment, which helps students to feel independent. Within a cluster flat they share a kitchen and a living room area which has everything they need, and similarly the ensuite bedrooms have everything students could wish for including a study desk and plenty of storage. For those seeking more privacy we also have the option of a studio flat. Students typically look for the same things with their accommodation; a great welcome from the site team, a sense of community, quiet rooms, fresh air and daylight, high quality internet and connectivity. This is what we provide.”
In addition to the cluster flats and studios, students have the opportunity to take advantage of stylishly designed common areas. The large space in Bentley House includes a pool table, table tennis and a flat screen TV. Other on-site facilities include a post and parcel collection service, bike storage, a laundry, a fully equipped gym, a landscaped courtyard and 24-hour staff.
So far, resident feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, with Tim adding: “I always say the job isn’t finished until residents have moved in and are settled. The feedback we’ve had has been very positive and students arriving were delighted with what they found.
“Looking back over the projects we have delivered over the years, seeing areas of cities transform, is a really encouraging thing. We think long and hard about where we locate ourselves in cities, trying to make a difference to student lives and local communities. I also get very proud when I visit our construction sites and see 200 operative builders and staff enjoying themselves and working hard to complete another great project.”
At the most recent National Student Housing Survey Awards, The Student Housing Company was named Best Private Halls Provider for the fourth consecutive year. Established in 2011 to develop purpose-built, high quality student accommodation, The Student Housing Company has brought a new energy and level of service to the student accommodation sector.
Wessex Furniture specialise in the design, manufacture and installation of contract bedroom furniture and kitchens for the student, hotel, residential care markets and the MoD – offering a full turn-key package to include the provision of kitchen appliances, loose furniture and curtains/blinds – therefore providing an all-encompassing service. Wessex Furniture is a trading division of Bridec Melamine Boards Ltd and has manufactured contract furniture in Bridport, Dorset for more than 30 years.
Over the past three decades, Wessex Furniture has supplied furniture to many UK university student accommodation developments, either directly or indirectly, through the larger privately operated student accommodation providers. Most recently, Pochin Construction Limited awarded Wessex Furniture the contract to supply and install bedroom furniture, kitchens and loose furniture to the Bentley House project.
Wessex Furniture Sales Manager, Richard Tattersall, said:
“We worked closely with the main contractor and their client Global Student Accommodation, to design furniture to meet their distinctive ‘Industrial Luxe’ specification which incorporated a combination of light grey/graphite cabinet carcases, graphite/woodgrain fascia’s, simulated concrete high pressure laminate kitchen worktops and cast iron handles throughout.”
With the project complete, The Student Housing Company, GSA’s operational arm now manages Bentley House.
“In addition to designing and manufacturing quality contract cabinet furniture, we pride ourselves in delivering and installing furniture to predetermined time scales. Our flexible UK based manufacturing facility means we can work with our clients to meet their construction program.”
“At Wessex Furniture, we have a proven track record of supplying furniture to major student accommodation developments. We would be pleased to discuss with you your future projects.”