‘Live like a local’ by staying in a serviced apartment when you relocate to the UK
More and more people relocating to the UK are choosing to live in a serviced apartment, having discovered the many benefits they offer.
These are exciting times for the sector. 2017 is set to be a year of record expansion in the UK with over 2,600 new serviced apartments set to open this year. Key growth hotspots include Manchester, Edinburgh and London and the rapid growth of the sector over the last few years means the option to stay in a serviced apartment is now a reality in every major city right across the UK.
Key Benefits of Using Serviced Apartments
But what is it that makes the serviced apartment so appealing?
James Foice, Chief Executive of the Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP), the not-for-profit trade body for the sector, explains:
‘A serviced apartment is the ideal solution for those relocating to the UK. It provides a fully furnished self-contained flat including a fully equipped kitchen with separate areas to sleep, work and eat so it offers a more complete ‘home-from-home’ experience where you can properly relax and enjoy more privacy, and start adapting to your new way of life straightaway. A key benefit is the extra space offered – you can expect up to 30% more space than a comparable standard of hotel room’.
Serviced apartments are also a cost-effective option offering excellent value for money – there are no expensive ‘extras’ to consider such as hotel minibars, restaurants and room service. Guests appreciate the flexibility to prepare their own meals and not be restricted by hotel restaurant opening times. Many operators provide a generous ‘welcome pack’ of groceries to ensure guests have sufficient food for the first 24 hours of their stay.
Families relocating particularly appreciate the more spacious living environment which serviced apartments offer. Children especially, benefit from having enough room to have more of their personal possessions around them, so important when settling in to a new country. Staying in a 2- or 3-bedroom apartment means children can have their own bedrooms; in smaller apartments extra beds for children can be easily arranged.
The fully equipped kitchen is a key feature. It will normally include a cooker/microwave, fridge-freezer and dishwasher, as well as an extensive range of crockery, cutlery, glassware and kitchen utensils. And while most serviced apartments offer a laundry service, families enjoy the convenience of having a washer/dryer provided within their serviced apartment which also saves them money. Bed linen, towels and toiletries will also be supplied. A weekly housekeeping service will be included, but a more frequent service can easily be arranged.
There is a wide product choice – ranging from studios to 4-bedroom apartments and penthouse suites; top of the range developments may even offer roof terraces or access to a swimming pool or gym. In this dynamic young industry the vast majority of developments are modern so you can expect contemporary, stylish interiors complete with mood lighting. High-speed Wi-Fi comes as standard in most serviced apartments.
And increasingly you’ll find the very latest in-room technology offering high-tech in-house entertainment as well as cutting-edge facilities such as keyless entry systems, complementary smartphones for guests and tablet-controlled rooms.
Serviced apartments can be booked for one night, one week, or several months with the cost generally decreasing, the longer the stay (for stays of 28+ days the VAT element reduces). A further advantage is that even for longer stays, there are no separate utility bills to worry about, since all these costs will be included in the overall price.
Apartments are normally in prime city locations, conveniently close to the place of work which delivers a further advantage – clients may be living only a very short walk away from their office, meaning minimal time is spent commuting.
Make sure you book with an ASAP Quality Accredited Operator or Agent
James Foice, ASAP Chief Executive, confirms the importance of booking with an ASAP Quality Accredited Operator or Agent: ‘The key thing that the guest wants is to know that the serviced apartment they are booking for their relocation has been fully assessed by a professional independent body and the reassurance that the operator or agent they have booked with fully complies with all the core legal, health and safety requirements. All ASAP operators and agents displaying the ASAP ‘Quality Accredited’ marque have successfully completed this rigorous quality accreditation process. The guest can then book and stay with confidence and feel safe in their new home’.
Visit www.theasap.org.uk for further information about the ASAP Quality Accreditation Marque and full details of the 175 serviced apartment operator and agent members of the ASAP. And you can find out more about the many benefits of staying in a serviced apartment (including a short video).