New Venue / i51 Q+A

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New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby Unspecified on Thu Apr 24, 2014 9:26 pm

Hi all,

So i know many people have questions about the new venue and as i attended i51 (as a volunteer) there last weekend I thought I'd throw up a thread in case anyone had any burning questions that i can do my best to answer.

Sooooooooooon
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby Security on Fri Apr 25, 2014 1:47 pm

I have been reading allot about food choice being allot better but I seen all sorts of claim about the quality, what are your experiences with the food at Ricoh?
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby Shuriken on Fri Apr 25, 2014 1:52 pm

Does this mean no wraps? :o I'll take a general increase in quality if I have to lose those awesome snacks but I may still cry inside a little
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby sweetamber92 on Fri Apr 25, 2014 5:20 pm

What was the parking like, wash it free and plentiful??
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby Unspecified on Fri Apr 25, 2014 6:44 pm

Food

Food menus from i51 are here and here. Can't confirm if they will be the same for i52, but i imagine they will be similar. I didn't hear many complaints about the quality, in fact almost everyone said the food was much nicer, bigger portions and better quality than telford, though obviously there was the odd person who had small issues.

The two main issues raised about the food was that it isnt cheap so whilst it was very nice it might still be slightly expensive. The second comment was the lack of choice in terms of sides/fresh items (i.e you can't get chips with your burger etc). Oh and a couple of people did question the quality of the pizza for £7 - it was no Stone Willies apparently. There are some wraps on there but i didnt try them and cant comment on if they are awesome or not.

Overall the opinion on the food was that it was better than telford and I'd agree with that based on what i ate!

Parking

Plenty of parking and it was free. It might be in shorter supply at summer but i didn't see any moaning on the forums or at the event about issues. Given its a football stadium they seemed to have built enough.

There were 3 main car parks: map. They tried to split BYOC and visitors between them, though i confess i cant quite recall which way around it was because i wasnt driving myself.
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby moe_guays on Fri Apr 25, 2014 7:29 pm

That menu is extortionate...
Is there a Tesco near by? or a restraunt (If I'm paying that money I'm having steak :) )

Glad to hear about the parking, I can bring my car.
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby NightStalker on Fri Apr 25, 2014 7:33 pm

Did you scope out the clan boxes at all?
Can you comment on the larger ones that you might have seen?

In terms of accommodation, how were the rooms, did you stay at the on site hotel or did you opt for some where offsite? (I presume you stayed in a hotel as I know how much you loath the camping...carrying things)
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby ApacheFlame on Fri Apr 25, 2014 7:33 pm

There is a really big sansbury's about 2 minutes walk away, as unspec told me the other night :)
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby Unspecified on Fri Apr 25, 2014 7:55 pm

Shops

There is a massive 24/7 Tesco (not sainsburys Apache ;) ) just below the campsites on this map. Its like a 5 minutes walk from your desk to the entrance at most, less from your tent.

In the same area as the Tesco (mini retail park) there is a camping shop in case you run out of tent pegs, a subway, a Decks (restaurant that does a good breakfast) and i believe there is a Burger King there somewhere too, plus other shops.

Accommodation
I didn't stay in the onsite, but i did see the rooms and they look good. I think getting one will be very hard though. Nacho stayed at the Novotel not far away and seemed pleased - i'll let him fill in on that.

I actually camped! (Don't sounded that shocked, i camped at i45!). The campsite is great location wise, but the ground was shit - rebar and all sorts sticking out. But fear not, they are going to resurface it before i52 - they just didn't have time to do so and let the grass grow before i51 and didn't want it to turn into a mud bath.
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby Miss_Skinny on Fri Apr 25, 2014 10:00 pm

We stayed in a Premier Inn about 6 miles from the Arena. Luckily we had a designated driver, but there are taxis already queued up outside the entrance to take you wherever (£15 a bit pricey, though!). Or you could just sleep underneath your table like this guy https://scontent-b-lhr.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/t1.0-9/923195_10152377804350692_91911640037689530_n.jpg

HUGE Tesco and nearby Greggs, Pizza Hut, Burger King, F&B and also a mini carvery that is apparently amazing!

Apart from hotel distance, Ricoh is a nice upgrade from TIC imo :D


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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby NachoDuck on Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:24 pm

Parking
sweetamber92 wrote:What was the parking like, wash it free and plentiful??
Unspecified wrote: They tried to split BYOC and visitors between them, though i confess i cant quite recall which way around it was because i wasnt driving myself.
Upon entering security pointed BYOC/Festival Ticket holders left towards car park A/B, day visitors were pointed to the right to the Casino car park. Parking in A will get you near the front entrance, parking in C will put you near the rear entrance to the arena. There were some cars packed in car park C over the weekend but I never parked there myself (I'm not sure why you would, who want's to walk more than is necessary?). Annoyingly the road to exit is a one way road that takes you almost around the entire outside of the arena, but from what I saw there were no issues with parking, not once did I fail to get a space in car park A that wasn't close to the door despite leaving and arrive at different times each day, it all seemed to be handled pretty well and is free!

Accommodation
I'm probably better off quoting my post from the other thread in regards to the accommodation, but to reiterate I was pretty happy with Novotel (especially the included breakfast!) other than the strange charge for parking that is imposed on guests.
NachoDuck wrote:There is one onsite hotel available the arena which is the De Vere hotel, this sold out within 20 minutes of the hotel bookings opening for the spring LAN as there wasn't many rooms available to attendees (most been reserved by MPUK). Due to this I stayed at the Novotel which is about a 5 minute drive/1 mile walk from the arena and overall had a pretty good stay there over 4 days, the hotel was quite busy but I wasn't disturbed by any noise at any point and there was also the surprise bonus of having breakfast included in price of the room which made it a pretty good deal in my opinion, it was a cooked buffet breakfast. I actually made the effort to get up before breakfast closed each day so I suppose that says something about the quality :P. The only complaint I have of my stay was that for some reason the hotel charges £4 per visit (ie each time you leave the premises) to use their car park, I'm not sure if this was due to previous problems with people using the parking for other events at the arena as some of the streets near the hotel also have restricted parking to permit holders only "during events", the date on the sign was in August so it didn't apply during our time there at least. Either way you can park on the street outside the hotel as I and some other guests chose to do.

Aside from my experience I think others stayed at the Premiere Inn/Holiday Inn which are slightly further away off J2 of the M6, these weren't included in the partner hotels for the event so you would be paying whatever the standard rate is if it stays the same for this event. There were some additional deals made with some of the hotels in the centre of Coventry, I didn't hear of anyone staying at these but there was a shuttle bus run by Coventry council from these to the venue as well as Novotel and a few other places in Coventry which could come in useful if you don't have another means to get around.

It's unfortunate that the venue doesn't have the same amount of on site accommodation as Telford did but I think it may have been quite unique in that way so the choice (or lack there of) we have for the Ricoh might be more along the norm for this sort of venue. I think I'll still try and get a onsite hotel this time again as it would have been nice to have a couple of drinks whilst I was playing rather than be face with driving back to the hotel each night but I wouldn't put all your hopes in getting a room there because demand for them will be even greater this time around.
Food
As for the food at the venue to be honest I was pretty impressed, it was nice to be able to order food from Foodplay again having pretty much abandoned the idea of buying any food from TIC catering towards the last couple of events. Although admittedly a little on the expensive side food always arrived very quick (even suspiciously quick for some food as pointed out on the MPUK forums for items such as Pizza) and was of decent standard, there appeared to be some disparity to what could be ordered from Foodplay and what you could get from the stalls in the food area but that might have been me not looking properly, I do recommend the paninis though! I think this is the first event in quite a long time where the majority of my meals have been bought from the venue, which I think is a pretty good sign in comparison to the habits that most people will have picked up due to the TIC catering.


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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby NightStalker on Sat Apr 26, 2014 3:52 am

How many nights and the total cost for staying in the Novotel?
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby EWJ on Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:20 pm

A greggs nearby! YAY! can atlast try the wonders of Greggs and its pies.
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Re: New Venue / i51 Q+A

Postby NachoDuck on Sat Apr 26, 2014 6:42 pm

NightStalker wrote:How many nights and the total cost for staying in the Novotel?

We stayed for 4 nights, the price for the event was £29.00 PP/PN so was £232 in total for 2 of us.


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