Hendon Hall in North London is the former home of 18th century actor, playwright and theatre manager David Garrick. In 1911, it was converted to a hotel before being used as an RAF Convalescent Home during WW2. Once reopened as a hotel, it famously hosted the England football team during their 1966 world cup-winning campaign.
Now it turns a new page beginning life as a retirement community, comprising 102 apartments including 24 specialist demential homes.
After a meticulous restoration which blends restored period features with cutting edge contemporary accommodation, amenities and technology Hendon Hall will open its doors in January 2022 with 2016 Masterchef winner Jane Devonshire advising on the restaurant’s menus.
How have the designs of Signature’s new homes been influenced as a result of the pandemic?
“Our homes have always had larger than average apartments with kitchenette facilities, as well as expansive communal areas, both of which lend themselves well to social distancing and resident isolation if required.
We have reduced our touchpoints significantly, with things like Hotel-style TV that allows residents to order food and make plans from the comfort of their living room.
In addition, all access points to the home have a specially designed PPE station, ensuring visitors are able to adhere to our infection control protocols.”
Importantly, to enable safe visiting in the event of further lockdown, Hendon Hall has been designed with a family room that also has external access to enable safe visiting.
What facilities are now considered essential? Outdoor space? Balconies? Smaller communal areas?
“A small number of our apartments and our first floor Dementia Community have a terrace, complemented by a range of communal areas including a large Village Hall and beautifully landscaped gardens.
These aspects have always been sought after, even pre pandemic, although they will certainly be seen as ‘must have’ items now.”
What kind of food will be served – will the restaurant/bistro be all-day dining.
“The Garrick Restaurant and Bistro offers formal dining, as well lighter menu options and alfresco meals on the outdoor terrace during warmer months.
Our lounge bar, named Bar 66 in recognition of the England football team staying at Hendon Hall in 1966, overlooks our gardens and has been fitted with fixtures and finishes reflecting Hendon’s sporting heritage.
What will Masterchef winner Jane Devonshire’s role be?
Jane has advised on our menus, with a focus on nutritionally balanced, delicious food.
We are flexible to meet dietary requirements such as vegetarian and diabetic, cater for allergies and diets for those with dysphagia.
Can you talk about the grounds, garden and outside areas – will there be any special features?
The home is surrounded by landscaped grounds with mature trees and sensory areas, as well as a main garden area and terraces.
We will also have a lovely garden room and raised flowerbeds where residents can grow flowers and plants, as well as a herb garden for our chefs to use.
How different will it be from Signature’s other homes?
Hendon Hall is unique as we are fortunate to have a listed building as our main hub complemented by new-build accommodation houses.
How welcoming will Hendon Hall be for families?
We actively encourage families to visit their loved ones. They are welcome to enjoy our dedicated family room, all day café, lounges and dining options, as well our private dining room which can be booked for special occasions.
Families can also enjoy time with their loved ones in our tranquil library on the first floor in the recreated stable block arch, housing an expansive arched window overlooking the stunning entrance area of the home.
Why is it important for care/nursing homes to appeal to families?
We find that the majority of our residents don’t tend to move far from their families, so it is important ensuring we have a welcoming environment for them.
Will there be an entertainment space and piano for concerts?
The Othello Hall and Activity Room provides a big flexible space for a range of activities and events. There is a stage and seating for up to 60 residents and guests.
We look forward to putting on events here, with both external performers and our residents getting involved and showing off their talents.
As part of our Hotel TV offering, we will also be able to live stream events and shows between all of our newer homes which is exciting.
How will Hendon Hall liaise with local community?
We are already working closely with a range of groups such as local schools, a Scout group, Age UK, Barnet Council and job centres as well as local businesses and charities.
It is our hope that Hendon Hall becomes a hub of activity for both residents and the surrounding community.
Signature at Hendon Hall will open in January 2022.