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Living at Orchard Commons Residence (UBC) | 1st Year Dorm Reviews at University of British Columbia

Orchard Commons is more of a hotel than it is a university residence. With the newest and most updated building designs and furniture, it is every first year student’s dream residence. That being said, every residence has its flaws, and so in this next section I will breakdown all of the aspects of living at Orchard Commons including the building, rooms, food, community and the location.

Buildings: OC has by far the nicest building. The 2 twin towers are over 20 stories tall and are literally like a hotel. Orchard was recently built and so the entire place looks very new and modern. You will have to pay a slightly higher rent, but it is 100% worth it. The building offers a really nice workout room, SUPER nice cafeteria, tons of study rooms and has very fast elevators. In literally every aspect, OC is the best 1st year res. Oh but one thing to know about OC is that you should get used to fire alarms going off. OC is well known for having an absurd amount of fire alarms pulled throughout the year, or just people burning stuff in microwaves. So get used to it.

Rooms: Most rooms are connected doubles, that means you get your own room, and you share a bathroom with one other person, which is one of the best case scenarios. Most other residences you will have 1 bathroom per floor and you will share it with 20+ people. The rooms are also some of the largest ones in all of UBC 1st years, and you will have no problem fitting all of your stuff. I will say that the beds are quite uncomfortable and you should probably bring a foam pad to put on top of your mattress. But that is the only bad thing I have to say about OC. The furniture is also very new and in very good condition, and also just looks the best in my opinion. The views from the higher OC floors are also unreal. You’ll also be so high up that you’ll have privacy, unlike other buildings that overlook each other from 10ft away *cough Vanier *cough. One of the most underrated things about OC is how nice the carpets are. There’s no weird stains on them and they are clean, so you don’t have to feel gross walking on them.

Food: OC also has the best food. The only bad thing about OC food is that lines can be a bit long at times. But that’s for good reason. A lot of people from Totem and Vanier will come to OC because of their superior food selection. There is a version of a pasta bar, burger/grill bar, mongolian grill, sandwich/burrito place and much more. They also have rotating selections that will sometimes include roast beef, spaghetti and other cool stuff. The seating area is decent, nothing special but it does its job. It can sometimes be hard to find places to sit however.

Community: OC community has the worst community, simply due to the pure size of the place. The community isn’t bad by any means, it just isn’t as good as the others. But who needs community when you’re living in a freaking hotel. OC does have outdoor ping pong tables and a really nice field though that you will always find people sitting or playing at.

Location: Similar to Totem; It is also in a very convenient spot for all Comp Sci students, science, engineer and LFS students as their main buildings are not too far of a walk away. It is quite far for Sauder students, Arts students and is a decent walk to get to the bus loop, Nest, and most other UBC buildings. On the bright side it is somewhat close to the frat village for weekend parties.

If you'd like a more in depth review, make sure to let us know by commenting below or simply viewing. If there is a decent amount of demand for one, we will start writing an "everything you need to know about living at Totem Park".