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YHA £1.42 million facelift set to create world-class Youth Hostel in Lake District
    06/12/2012 01:17

£1.42 million facelift set to create world-class Youth Hostel in Lake District

A £1.42 million investment in YHA Ambleside in Waterhead, is set to create another world-class Youth Hostel with hotel-style facilities for family groups and tourists.

YHA Ambleside’s extensive refurbishment will bring the popular Youth Hostel in-line with YHA’s modern service offering of en suite accommodation, private family rooms, licensed restaurant and education facilities. Today, some Youth Hostels even have honeymoon suites and are used as wedding venues.

Unusually for many accommodation providers, the numbers of beds at YHA Ambleside are being reduced from 258 to 240 as part of its refurbishment. The reduction in beds will enable the Youth Hostel to create more washrooms and a number of premium en suite bedrooms with a lake view. Work will be completed at YHA Ambleside in April when it will re-open to the public with 64 rooms.
As well as total redecoration and furniture throughout, there will be a new reception area and more public facilities, including an education and conference space with the latest audio visual equipment as well as an improved licensed cafe bar which will be open to non-residents as well as guests.

Delighted with the investment, Manager of YHA Ambleside Peter Brendling said: “The refurbishment at YHA Ambleside is a great opportunity to showcase the high quality service and accommodation YHA has to offer the local community, tourists and schools. I am particularly excited about the opening of our licensed restaurant. Great food, combined with stunning views across Lake Windermere, is set to make it one of the best eateries in the Lake District.”

With facilities such as these it comes as little surprise that YHA was recently ranked number 4, just behind the luxury chains hotels, Sofitel, Hotel Du Vin & Bistro and Malmaison, in the Guardian, Observer and Readers' Travel Awards 2012. Marriott was ranked at number 5 in the category.

The investment in the Youth Hostel by the Youth Hostelling charity is part of YHA’s Capital Investment plan to create a world-class network of Youth Hostels in England and Wales and change the outdated public perception of its accommodation. The Charity’s significant continued investment in its network is helping YHA put further distance between the outdated public perception of Youth Hostels and the modern reality, which is proving particularly popular with young families looking for great value, child-friendly breaks.

YHA Ambleside is one of six Youth Hostels taking a share of YHA’s £10 million capital investment fund in 2012/13. The other hostels include YHA York, Stratford-upon-Avon, Malham in North Yorkshire, and Canterbury in Kent– as well as creating a new Youth Hostel in the South Downs. All six hostels are currently undergoing extensive refurbishment and will re-open from March 2013 onwards.

The Charity, which has around 150 Youth Hostels throughout England and Wales, has worked hard to shed its former reputation of rickety bunk beds, sleeping bags, compulsory membership, chores and 1960s dormitories by investing more than £19.5m in recent years in to its network. The investment is helping create great value, modern and comfortable accommodation which is open to everyone; however there are significant discounts for YHA members.

Commenting on the Capital Investment Plan and YHA’s public image change Caroline White, Chief Executive of YHA (England and Wales) said: “We’re continuing to invest in our hostels to make sure they continue to offer the great welcome and friendly stay of which we are rightly proud.

“We want to make sure that we continue to have world class hostels in fantastic locations and to make sure that as many people as possible know about what a great time they can have when they stay with us.”

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