The WhatHouse? Awards is the most prestigious event for the UK’s home builders. Now in its 35th year, this year’s event took place in the Great Room of the Grosvenor House Hotel, in London’s Park Lane and around 1700 senior industry figures attended the ceremony (including host, William Hague, former MP, Foreign Secretary and Leader of the Conservative party) to celebrate the winners of 20 different categories, covering the wide spectrum of property types and companies in the home building industry. We were invited to attend as guests of Audley Retirement, as the architect of the near-completed Chalfont Dene Retirement Village.
We were absolutely delighted to be presented with the Gold Award for Best Retirement Development; the winning Chalfont Dene Retirement Village in Buckinghamshire is the first scheme we have designed for Audley as a total new build. Many of our previous developments have retained significant historic properties, which we have been able to restore, adapt and extend. We weren’t afforded this luxury at Chalfont and as a result, we are even more elated that our Arts and Crafts, Lutyens inspired village has been not only recognised, but celebrated as the winning design in the 2016 Awards. Not only this, but we were thrilled that the village also won the Gold Award for Interior Design, members of our team at Gaunt Francis having worked closely in partnership with the interior designers for the scheme, Inside Design Co.
At completion, the village will have 84 luxury apartments; a mix of one, two and three bedrooms, designed as micro-communities in stable block clusters, with the grand house, The Audley Club, at its heart. The village will also boast a stylish bar, outside terrace and restaurant, fitness centre, indoor pool and landscaped gardens, including an ornamental lake- the rolling Chiltern hills in view.
WhatHouse judges described our design at Chalfont:
“Creating a brand new retirement village that has the feel of an established community is one of the secrets to Audley Chalfont Dene’s success… there’s not shortage of wow factor here or opulent furnishings that would enhance a top-class boutique hotel…”
The ageing population of the Chiltern region along with its countryside setting, makes the village at Chalfont Dene the ideal location for an Audley Care Community, and the Gaunt Francis designed Audley model is clearly differentiated from more traditional ways of providing care for the elderly, bringing luxury, dignity and avoiding institutionalisation.
Many thanks to Audley for inviting us to what was an exciting and entertaining evening at the WhatHouse? 2016 Awards ceremony, and we are extremely proud to have designed the double Gold Award winning retirement village.