The Edge Hotel School: Essex hotel to be run by students

By Luke Nicholls

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Hotel

The Edge Hotel School will be based in Wivenhoe House in Colchester
The Edge Hotel School will be based in Wivenhoe House in Colchester
The Edge Hotel School - the UK’s first hotel school to provide degree-level studies entirely within a fully operational commercial hotel - is set to enrol its first set of students to the newly refurbished Wivenhoe House hotel and restaurant in Essex later this year.

Students will be ‘learning while doing’, working across every area of the hotel and fine-dining restaurant. They will have the option of earning a one-year foundation degree or a two-year BA Honours degree - both awarded by the neighbouring University of Essex.

Speaking at the launch preview of the Edge Hotel School last night, Sir Garry Hawkes CBE, president of independent education foundation Edge, said: “This is one of the most exciting developments in hospitality education for well over a generation.

“To be able to operate a fully commercial hotel, as well as providing both quality practical and vocational learning for the next generation of hospitality students is a great move forward for the industry. We are delighted to be nearing the finish line on this unique project with our partners and overwhelming industry support.”

The students, who will be known as Student Practitioners, will enrol in June, July and September 2012. There will then be three intakes of Student Practitioners per year, and they will be organised in to Butlers Teams where they will experience every area of the hotel’s operation.

Five-star service

Facilities at the Grade II listed Wivenhoe House include period suites and rooms, a new garden wing, a signature restaurant for more formal dining, a brasserie for informal dining, and conference facilities. The building itself has been restored as part of the £10m investment in the project.

Stephen Mannock, general manager of Wivenhoe House, added: “The hotel will be four-star in terms of the physical facilities, aspiring to deliver five-star service standards. The Edge Hotel School will raise the bar in providing a professional education which meets the needs of the international hotel industry.

“Guests can look forward to an intriguingly different experience, with the flair and attention to detail you would expect from the future leaders of the industry.”


The below video shows what the refurbished hotel will look like when work is completed this spring:

Sponsors and Scholarships

Led by the new initiative, the hotel has been able to develop a number of partnerships with the wider hospitality industry. Tableware supplier Churchill will be supplying the hotel’s glassware, china and cutlery, while a number of businesses including Hilton Worldwide and BaxterStorey have sponsored some of the rooms, bespoke to their own brand’s design.

The school has also this month announced it will award nine Savoy Educational Trust scholarships worth £3,000 each for students enrolling this year.

The Edge Hotel School is a partnership between Edge, the University of Essex and its academic partner Kaplan. For further information on the initiative, visit​.

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