By Nikol Stoykova
We all know that living away from home is one of the joys of experiencing university life. Living in student halls can be freeing, exciting, nerve-wracking, very rewarding, and, most certainly, a different experience for everybody. In any case, here at the IH blog, we know that every single one of our residents, whether new or returning, comes to our hall with hopes, dreams, and expectations about what life at uni is like. Whatever you make of your first (or second, or third) year living in halls, we promise you that it will be a memory that will stay with you for a lifetime. And, to relieve some of your doubts or curiosities about what living in IH for the next year is going to look like, we put together a little guide for you. Here are 5 reasons why we think you’re going to have the best time with us!
1. The Location
IH is located in Bloomsbury, in the very heart of London. That’s right – your new home is just a few steps away from Russel Square; 5 minutes away from the British Museum and 10 minutes away from King’s Cross; 15 minutes away from the busy Oxford Street and 20 minutes away from the Waterfront. Being so central, it also provides a wonderful opportunity to choose between immersing yourself in the busy and loud London crowds or stepping away from them and spending a peaceful afternoon in quiet. The good thing about our location is that there’s always something for everyone: Victorian architecture, quiet parks, busy streets, crowded pubs, or artsy bookshops. Mostly: always something new to explore. IH just never gets boring. Which brings us onto the next point…
2. Things to Do
You can never exhaust your options of what to do around IH—if anything, they might exhaust you. Living in Bloomsbury can serve any mood, need, and personality. Countless museums and art galleries surround us: starting from the Charles Dickens museum almost literally next door, to—of course—the British museum, the British Library, and the National Gallery. P.S.: Some more alternative options that we recommend are: The Welcome Collection, Sir John Soane’s Museum, and The Wallace Collection. If you’re not a museum type of person, then perhaps you might enjoy the parks around IH, such as Bloomsbury square gardens, Russel Square, or Tavistock square Gardens. P.S.: A secret alternative option we recommend is St. George’s gardens, a Victorian park with lots of flowers, not that many people, and a few charming tombstones. And if even that doesn’t sound appealing to you, then let’s talk about shopping and eating. Brunswick square right across the street is going to be your new best friend, and don’t even get us started on our restaurant options! Any dish you dream of is probably just a walking distance away from you. P.S.: If you’re a sushi/ramen fan, Eat Tokyo is a dream come true.
One of the best things about IH is that you get to live with your friends and be around them all the time! IH gives you the unique opportunity to meet all kinds of people from all kinds of places. Few other halls combine so many different people under one roof. Here, you will meet friends from other universities and courses, cultures, and backgrounds. Our advice is to stay open-minded, kind, and positive. The best way to make new friends is by going to our events and parties, getting to know people at dinner, and even meeting your neighbours in the lift. Mark our words: towards the end of the year everyone in IH is going to be your friend! #IHLove
Did we already mention that the best way to meet new friends is by coming to all of our events? Yes, we did—because you totally should! IH already has your back with all of these awesome icebreaker events planned for you. If you still haven’t got a chance to take a look, you can find a list of all of them here. We promise you’re going to have a lot of fun and it will make getting to know everybody in the halls so much more exciting and stress-free! If you think that our cool events stop with Fresher’s, well, you’re wrong. Let us reassure you that throughout the year you will be seeing posters for more and more exciting events, so keep a lookout for those! On a more regular basis, we have lots of activities happening weekly around the hall, such as football practice, yoga, running sessions, FIFA tournaments and more. All of them a great way to relax and connect with others.
IH has many surprises up its sleeve. For those of you who don’t feel like going out or just prefer to be lazy and stay in for the day, rest assure you won’t be bored. The music room and the piano room are always available for booking. Starting from this year, the piano has a new friend: a guitar. All music enthusiasts are welcome to try their hands on it or bring their own instruments down to the music room. If you’re more of a sporty type of person, IH offers a squash room and equipment for anyone interested to play. The squash room is also the place where yoga and HIIT sessions take place. And if you simply just don’t feel like moving, then the TV room is the one for you. Watch a movie or choose from a variety of PlayStation games to kick back with your friends. We also have a big selection of board games you can borrow from reception, such as Monopoly and Cards against Humanity. So much to choose from, so much to do!
However your decide to spend your time in IH, we are sure you’re going to have lots of fun and meet so many amazing people. We hope you’re as excited to meet us just as much as we are to meet you! And keep an eye out for the blog where we’ll regularly keep uploading some new inspiration on how to get the best out of living in London.