Moving to a new city and starting a college or university course is an exciting but sometimes daunting prospect. Finding the right accommodation can be an added stress but with From Here Student Living on Dublin’s up and coming Cork St location, the hassle is taken out of the hunt to find the perfect spot.
This brand new, stylish student accommodation is located just 2km from the city centre and is in close proximity to all colleges and universities in and around the city. With a bus route right out front and a Lidl next door, students have everything they need on their doorstep, as well as having the benefit of a fully serviced, well managed facility to call home.
David Barkley, operations manager with Fresh Student Living group, the operator of the accommodation, explains the many merits of choosing student accommodation.
“I’d never knock a house share – I did it myself – but this has everything a student needs right on site. We have everything from shared study spaces, project rooms and screening room to gym, laundromat, roof garden as well as a 24/7 managed building,” he says.
1. It’s got location, location, location
Situated a short walk from St Stephen’s Green, the building is very close to the city centre and many of the bigger colleges.
“Students are coming from RCSI, Griffith, Trinity, DIT, UCD as well as many of the language schools - so there is a really nice mix. A lot of the students cycle or walk, and it’s very easy to do both in and around the city,” Barkley says.
2. There are plenty of on-site amenities
“On site we have an office that is operational 24/7, and in the evening we have a security team looking after student welfare, so there is always someone there should they be needed. There are individual study areas, an on-site gym, courtyard, laundry, a cinema room, bicycle storage, yoga area, a roof terrace and communal dining areas. All bills are included as well as unlimited high speed WIFI, so everything a student leaving home for the first time might need is there,” he says.
3. Discover a range of accommodation options
Whether students are eager to share with a mate or want their own space, the accommodation offers a range of possibilities, all tastefully decorated. “We offer shared apartments all with private en-suite bedroom and access to a shared kitchen and living space,” Barkley says.
“Each room comes with a double bed, loads of storage, plenty of workspace and an en-suite shower room. Or they can go for a studio which offers the same features as the other rooms but with more space and their very own mini-kitchen. Each room also has a study desk – normally we encourage the use of communal study spaces, but we need to make sure it’s safe to do so at this time. Our resident’s safety is our utmost priority,” he says.
4. Your safety is a priority
Strict measures have been put in place to ensure all students and staff member’s safety, while also striving to create a relaxed and normal living environment.
“We’ve put up Perspex screening and signage throughout the building to remind everyone to social distance. We encourage couriers to deliver to post boxes or we can accept packages for students. We will operate a keep left policy, as well as having hand sanitisers throughout the building,” Barkley says.
“Lifts are restricted to two people at a time, and we ask that people face away from each other in the lift, while gym numbers will also be reduced. Everyone can still use the gym but at staggered times. We are also reducing the seating areas and have spread it out a lot more.
“For any student who may develop symptoms, the team has procedures in place. We manage over 20,000 beds and have well developed Covid-19 management policies and procedures.
“We have put a barcode scanner behind the doors in each flat entrance and the student can use this to report symptoms and then we can deliver medicines or food parcels to their door. I think this is going to be instrumental in securing the safety of all students,” he says.
5. Extras come as standard
Some students might be excited to make that first trip to Ikea but if they aren’t keen, bedding and kitchen packs, including items such as cutlery and plates, come as standard with each tenancy.
“With so much on site, students don’t have to worry about paying for extras like the gym or launderette either. There is onsite management and a maintenance person, so if they have an issue with their room, they are there to fix that,” Barkley says.
“Now, due to Covid-19, we have an online portal where our maintenance team can do a diagnostic over a virtual face to face, and if the problem is something simple, maintenance can talk the student through it. It means they don’t have to have another person in their room,” he adds.
6. Your social life will get a boost
Previously everything from pizza parties, cinema nights, city tours, yoga sessions, pamper nights and running clubs were offered and they all meant that making new friends was easy. Many of these events may be curtailed for now, but Barkley says a lot of social gatherings can and will be moved online.
“Social is very important for us and as there is a mix of so many people, students get to meet a very diverse group. But it’s not all about partying these days, we find students are very much focussed on education and having a space where they can concentrate on their studies. We ask the students what they would like to see happening, and it’s all about inclusion.”
7. Flexible tenancies offer reassurance
With college start dates being moved as circumstances surrounding the coronavirus change and with some colleges not starting face-to-face learning until January 2021, Barkley says it is important that they work with students in terms of introducing flexible tenancies.
“Students can book their room now and we will keep the space for them, but they won’t have to pay till they start their course. We have some rooms available from January also, so give us a call or email and we can discuss all options,” he says.