Every quarter, the Hubble team have an Away Day. In true Hubble style, the format consists of a combination of work and play – starting with a day of work-related presentations, planning, and team-building. In the afternoon and evening, we’ll organise fun activities to wind down, celebrate our successes, and get to know each other better.
Having had our latest Away Day just last week, and with the Christmas party season approaching fast, we thought the time was ripe to share our tips on how we go about organising such events – a task that can feel somewhat daunting when you’re faced with the varying interests and home locations of your team members.
So let’s start with arguably the most crucial element: the venue. We’ve clubbed together with the team at VenueScanner to find you some great suggestions of where to go for your work events, from those suitable for the daytime activities, to where you should head at night.
We’ve been lucky enough to be hosted by some incredible workspaces during our recent Away Days. Here’s an intro to the past five:
Located right opposite Borough tube station, Fora: Borough is one of the coolest workspaces in SE1 (and arguably London). The space occupies six whole floors – each beautifully decorated with hand-painted tiles – which can be multi-tenanted for smaller requirements or self-contained for individuals. We used one of their stylish, AV-equipped meeting rooms for our Away Day – but that barely scratches the surface of what they have on offer.
The facilities are typical of Fora’s very high standards: from the incredible roof terrace with stunning views of London, to Borealis, the onsite cafe and restaurant that sources fresh, local ingredients from nearby Borough market. On top of this, they also have an onsite gym, showers, bike storage, a meditation pod, and even a “call-free” room where members can nab some peace and quiet.
We loved working there, and would highly recommend it as a venue for any of your events – but especially as your permanent workspace.
Back in March, we spent our Away Day at Pavilion Kensington. This luxurious professional space is located within the leafy and green borough of Kensington & Chelsea, and offers unparalleled service to members. When we say unparalleled service – we mean it…think coffee, cake, and refreshments delivered directly to your desk! What’s more, they even have The Ivy Brasserie in the building, providing an impressive venue for lunches and after work drinks. Perfect if you want to impress clients.
All of their offices are generous in size and are kitted out with bespoke furniture, and we can attest to the high quality of their conference rooms and tech facilities. Check it out here if you want to find out more!
We loved spending our Christmas Away Day last year at LABS Holborn. Situated just a stone’s throw from Holborn tube, it provides an excellent central point for larger teams, with easy access from all parts of London. It is also a delight to be in from the moment you enter the door. Seven floors of contemporary workspace include features such as private offices, inspiring coworking lounges, state-of-the-art meeting rooms, and excellent technology facilities, and they also offer a good combination of open plan areas that foster networking and collaboration, as well as dedicated conference rooms with world-class facilities (which we used ourselves).
LABS also have fantastic workspaces located elsewhere in London, take a look here.
Another workspace we’ve visited as a team is Ministry of Sound – the famous, young, vibrant workspace with a genuine buzz (unsurprisingly, they always have music playing!) based in Elephant & Castle. They have a range of fixed and hot desks, plentiful breakout space, four meeting rooms of varying sizes (one of which is an impressive boardroom), a large breakfast bar, and fast WiFi. They have no minimum rental terms, too – allowing you to remain flexible with your format – and the price is inclusive of printing, photocopying, and scanning.
Plus, its attached to the most famous nightclub in London…making that day to night transition from work to play pretty simple.
Finally, Metal Box Factory. Located six minutes from Borough station and ten minutes from London Bridge, this stunning redevelopment boasts everything from an enclosed roof garden and striking central atrium to bike storage and regular events. It’s cool, bright, and modern, and offers excellent professional facilities – in fact, MBF was one of the first buildings in London to receive a Wired Certified Platinum rating for connectivity, meaning that it has insanely fast broadband speeds for your business.
On top of this, the prices are more than affordable, with full-time hot desks starting at just £150 pp/month, and the location makes it ideal to slip out on the town with the team once the work is done. Explore the space here!
This is one we’ve done ourselves – and loved!
Comprising two 9-hole crazy golf courses with three brilliant street food vendors, five cocktail bars and a two-storey clubhouse, Swingers is great spot for a bit of competitive socialising. Housed in a 16,000 sq ft basement underneath the Gherkin, Swingers recreates a quintessential 1920s English country golf club. Totally unique and very fun, Swingers is the ideal venue for team building, client entertaining, or festive celebrations, with a range of packages and exclusive areas available for groups of 12-500 people.
Everyone loves a bit of bowling, making All Star Lanes an ideal destination for an evening out with work. And this isn’t just your standard ten pins – at All Star Lanes you’ll find cocktails on the lanes, Champagne at the bar, Wagyu burgers in the restaurant, and legendary private room parties. They’ve got it all. Plus, you can choose between a number of venues all over London to best suit your team, from Stratford to Holborn. This Brick Lane party pad (and epic Penthouse, if it takes your fancy) is inspired by speakeasy nights in Manhattan, has capacity for 40-130 people, and will guarantee to provide a memorable evening for all.
If you’re looking for somewhere cool to hold your party, then it genuinely can’t get any cooler than the ICEBAR. It’s a completely unique environment: the walls, bar, tables and even the drinks glasses are all made of the purest Swedish ice. Choose this venue and you can host your dinner or pre-ICEBAR-experience cocktails in one of the warm rooms, (either on exclusive hire or book an area) then hire the ICEBAR itself exclusively for a 40 minute session. And of course – capes are provided for warmth!
Flight Club is the birthplace of Social Darts. It’s taken the traditional game of darts and supercharged it – using unique, patented technology to create a fun social experience for groups of 6 to 250. It’s ideal for a bit of gentle rivalry, as team members can join exciting, multi-player tournaments, competing against each other across multiple spaces. What’s more, if you want to make this your destination for the whole day, then Flight Club has recently launched The Flight Club Teambuilder. Available for groups of 40-60, it combines pizza making, cocktail shaking, a Social Darts tournament, as well as a platform to discuss business objectives!
Polpo is a bàcaro – that’s a Venetian word to describe a humble restaurant serving simple food and good, young Italian wines. If you’re looking for a more chilled setting where team members can relax, chat, and get to know each other, then this is the place to do so. Polpo offer tasty small plates, Prosecco, and Spritz in charming surroundings reminiscent of Venice. Below the restaurant in the basement, you’ll also find the Campari Bar. This can accommodate up to 16 people for a sit down meal, or up to 30 for an informal drinks party.