An Overview of College Housing
Information about specific College rooms can be found in the rooms database. However, students are often more concerned by the overall nature of a house. Below we provide a totally biased personal summary…
The bulk of College housing can be split into 4 sets. There's about 35 rooms in Barnwell hostel, 13 rooms at Park Lodge, 15 rooms in two houses on Tenison Road (33/43), and another 29 rooms in two houses on Hills Road. There are also some rooms at Cutter Ferry house and 8 Norwich Street.
The most recent official MCR review of College housing was conducted in 2011.
Barnwell is the biggest graduate housing complex in College, with around 35 rooms in total. It is very undergraduate dorm-like in style, with a single large kitchen (4 ovens, 16 hobs) shared by everyone. In general rooms are a reasonable size, and typically showers are shared between 6-7 people. Overall the complex is not particularly pretty, but it probably provides the best social introduction to the College, especially if you cook regularly. There have been major internet issues in Barnwell recently, though College is working to resolve this. Barnwell is ~10 minutes walk from College.
Park Lodge is the only Graduate housing on the College site, and is often popular with one-year students looking for the "Cambridge" experience. Given the proximity to hall, it's a good call if you'd rather not cook for yourself. There's quite a range of room size/quality, a single kitchen with 2 ovens (8 hobs), and two showers. The building could perhaps use a paint job in places, but is consistently a very popular place to live.
The Tenison houses
33 and 43 have 7/8 rooms each, and are the most "house-like" of graduate properties in Emma. With a couple of exceptions, most rooms are reasonably sized and in good condition. 33 has one large kitchen, while 43 has two smaller ones. Each house has one shower. The highlight of these houses is location, ten minutes walk from the train station and right next to Mill Road; one of Cambridge's highlights (popular restaurants, cheap international supermarkets, and a couple of the best pubs nearby to boot). It's about 15 minutes walk to College.
Hills road is rather far from the city centre, near to the hospital; so if you're living here chances are you're probably a medic. The two houses are both in good condition, and rooms are spacious compared to housing nearer College. Living so far out can unfortunately be a little isolating.
Cutter Ferry House
Cutter Ferry House, at the back of the college’s boathouse, has 8 rooms, all for graduate students. Upstairs is a well equipped kitchen, and there are laundry facilities in the house itself. It’s very convenient if you choose to row, and it’s only a 15 minute walk from college (5 minut cycle) — plus, it’s close to Barnwell.
Meanwhile 8 Norwich Street has another 4 rooms. Unfortunately the present author knows very little about this property.