Green venue Utilita Bowl lap of luxury


Ageas Bowl naming rights Image: @UtilitaBowl (X)

The Hampshire County Cricket Club’s (UK) home ground will be known as the Utilita Bowl after the venue agreed to a multiyear naming-rights deal with the energy supplier recently.

‘the cricketer’ stated that the hunt had been on to replace the insurance company Ageas, ever since it became known last June that the longstanding partnership would be coming to an end.

The Hampshire County Cricket Club is one of 18 first-class county clubs within the domestic cricket structure of England and Wales (UK). It represents the historic county of Hampshire.

The 25,000-capacity Rose Bowl, known for sponsorship reasons as the Utilita Bowl, is a cricket ground and hotel complex in West End, Hampshire (UK). It is the home of the Hampshire County Cricket Club, who has played there since 2001.

Hampshire (UK)-based the Utilita Energy is an electricity and gas supplier operating in the United Kingdom. Utilita began trading in 2003, specializing in pay-as-you-go metering. As of January 2021, Utilita had over 800,000 customers representing a 2.6 percent share in the domestic market.

Ageas is a Belgian-French multinational insurance company co-headquartered in Brussels. Ageas is Belgium’s largest insurer and operates in 14 countries worldwide.

‘the cricketer’ further stated that the insurer’s brand had been synonymous with the South-Coast stadium for 11 years, having initially begun its association with Hampshire in February 2012.

But a new arrangement with the Hampshire-based company Utilita will see Hampshire attempt to become “the greenest international cricket venue in the world”.

Shared David Mann, Chief Executive at the venue, “As two organizations that already play a major role in helping to add value to our local communities through our respective foundations, together we can extend our efforts even further at a time when this help is needed more than ever. This is the dawn of a new era for the venue, and we’re excited by the possibilities this partnership will offer.”

The first move for that aspiration is set to see the installation of more than 1,000 solar panels capable of generating around 25 per cent of the electricity used in the stadium each year, and more than enough to cover the electricity consumed during matchdays.

A statement from the venue added that this development would save “a six-figure sum each year in electricity costs, as well as 80 tonnes of carbon per year – the same level of emissions produced by driving 301,855 miles in the average passenger vehicle.”

The ground is set to host 19 international fixtures between 2025 and 2031, including a maiden men’s Ashes Test in 2027.

Informed Bill Bullen, Utilita Chief Executive, “The cheapest and greenest energy is the energy we don’t use, and that’s exactly what this partnership is designed to do – cut energy usage. This support doesn’t stop at the venue itself but is extended to the over half a million visitors who walk through its doors each year. We will work closely with the venue to ensure that they lead the way in becoming more sustainable across all aspects of their operations: From travel and matchdays, to the day-to-day running of the ground and any ancillary developments. This truly is a unique, first-of-its-kind partnership in British sport.”

The Ageas Bowl was opened in 2001 and went by its original Rose Bowl moniker for its first decade.

Its naming rights became available at the same time a major redevelopment project of the facility is going through the planning process.

The blueprints, which are with the Eastleigh Borough Council for consideration, include the construction of 185 new homes, a 142-bedroom hotel, a 71-bedroom care home, a well-being center, a new pavilion, as well as improvements to the general infrastructure around the site.

Cricketing Action

‘utilita bowl’ stated that the Utilita Bowl welcomes a whole host of cricketing action every Summer, including the England internationals, the Vitality Blast (a professional Twenty20 cricket competition for the English and Welsh first-class counties), The Hundred (a 100-ball cricket tournament involving teams in major Cities across England and Wales), and more.

2023 was a thrilling summer of cricket. Hampshire contested as one of the top teams in their Division One County Championship campaign, and making it to Finals Days for both the Metro Bank One Day Cup and the Vitality Blast competitions.

Record-breaking crowds flocked to the Utilita Bowl for The Hundred in the competition’s third installment in August, seeing the Southern Brave Women (the team represents the historic counties of Hampshire and Sussex) win their first Hundred title and the Southern Brave Men (a franchise 100-ball cricket side based in the City of Southampton. The team represents the historic counties of Hampshire and Sussex) make it through to the Eliminator.

Oasis of Luxury

‘utilita bowl’ further stated that its gorgeous eforea spa is a place like no other, an oasis of luxury, offering the ultimate relaxation experience.

Boasting a multitude of thermal experiences and luxurious journeys, one is sure to find oneself emerging brighter, refreshed and reconnected.

Recently voted the ‘Luxury Spa of the Year’ by the South England Prestige Awards 2023/2024 and the ‘Best Luxury Spa’ in the South Coast, the Lux Life 2023 eforea spa is like no other. Prepare to restore your mind, body and soul courtesy of its ELEMIS-designed signature treatments. Immerse yourself in stunning spa facilities, both indoor and outdoor and relax in the tranquil atmosphere of the Spa Cafe – the eforea Pantry.

Epicurean Delight

Inspired by the English cricketing legend Lord Botham, the BEEFY’S Bar and Restaurant serves the best of British cuisine.

At BEEFY’S by Lord Botham, only top-quality seasonal ingredients are used to create sumptuous dishes inspired by the British Isles.

The restaurant’s décor, furniture and layout, combined with stunning views over the Utilita Bowl cricket and events stadium, as well as a carefully curated wine list and à la carte menus, deem BEEFY’S by Lord Botham the perfect place to gather for business or pleasure.

From the finest craft ales to perfectly blended cocktails, one will be sure to find the perfect drink at the BEEFY’S Bar, with a large selection of wines from around the world to discover, all of which perfectly complement the dishes on their menus.

Event Space

The Utilita Bowl and Hilton at The Utilita Bowl boast a vast range of suites and event space, capable of accommodating from as few as 10 to as many as 700 guests.

Luxe Unlimited

The Hilton SouthamptonUtilita Bowl boasts 171 stunning bedrooms, each providing picture-perfect views over Utilita Bowl or sprawling 18-hole Boundary Lakes Golf Course.

With a range of stylish and spacious rooms to choose from and an array of onsite amenities to keep one busy during one’s stay, one will wish one had more time to spend.

What’s more, one can combine any overnight stay in one of Hilton Southampton – Utilita Bowl’s beautiful bedrooms with a break in the luxury eforea spa or a trip to a local attraction.

And, of course, with the home of Hampshire Cricket just a glance away, one is unlikely to be short of entertainment and excitement.

The Utilita Bowl plays host to an array of sporting and showpiece occasions every year and one can enjoy the action with one of the venue’s premium hospitality offerings.

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