We’ve needed more indoor sports options for a long time. And now we are getting it.
The St James is 450,000 square feet of sports awesomeness. The St. James will provide a diverse and extensive combination of sports competition and training venues, transformative developmental programs and best-in-class coaching. Athletes and enthusiasts of all ages and skill levels can immerse themselves in an unprecedented variety of sports — from ice hockey, soccer, lacrosse, and baseball to squash, golf, basketball, volleyball, swimming and more.
The Washingtonian described it as a complex with so many different elements to it, it sounds like satire when you list it all out.” And what a list it is! The St. James will include:
- Field House with a FIFA regulation-sized turf field — the only such field in the region — and 65-foot roof clearances for all turf sports
- Ice House with two NHL regulation-sized ice rinks for all ice sports and a hockey skills training center that includes both rapid shot and rapid hands skills training systems and a skating treadmill
- Court House with four full-length regulation basketball courts that convert into nine volleyball courts
- Pool House with a 50-meter Olympic regulation-sized competition pool for all water sports
- Hitting House with six batting cages and pitching machines for baseball and softball that converts into a multipurpose training venue
- Squash and Golf Center with eight international regulation-sized squash singles courts and seven golf simulators
- High Performance Center with 10,000 square feet of elite strength, explosiveness and agility conditioning and training equipment housed within the 50,000-square foot premium health club
- Gymnastics Training Center with a competition spring floor, deep foam training pits, Tumbl Trak, rod floors and in-ground trampolines
- Climbing and Bouldering with three stories and 3,000 square feet of climbing experiences
- Premium Health Club with 50,000 square feet of state-of-the-art cardio and strength training equipment, spinning, group fitness and yoga rooms, a 10,000-square foot high-performance training center, premium locker rooms and childcare for member families
- Premium Spa and Rejuvenation Center with nine well-appointed treatment rooms for massage, facial and other skin treatments, a cryotherapy chamber, a manicure, and pedicure studio and a rejuvenation lounge
- Health and Sports Medicine Center featuring a best-in-class healthcare partner providing general non-emergent health care services, sports medicine, sports performance and rehabilitation
- Active Entertainment Center with 20,000 square feet of dynamic obstacle courses, zip lines, climbing structures and climbing walls, trampoline zones, virtual reality, a gaming theatre and party rooms
- Indoor Water Park with 6,000 square feet of exciting slides, massive water dumping buckets, long distance sprayers and other water-based play features
- Restaurant and Market Café conceived in collaboration with a celebrity chef and delivering healthy and delicious cuisine
- Performance Boutique featuring a sneaker boutique, performance-oriented apparel, technology, equipment and The St. James branded apparel
But we can’t gloss over one of the best things about The St. James: two NHL regulation sheets of ice. Ice hockey is a popular sport in Northern Virginia and ice time is always at a premium. Stories of adults starting games well after midnight are far too common. You want proof how important the ice is? Alex Ovechkin was at the groundbreaking. As WTOP reported, Ovie noted, “It’s going to be huge for kids who want to be involved on the ice,” he said. “I wish I had those kinds of facilities when I was a kid.”
Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bolivia and Mason District Supervisor Penny Gross attended and spoke at the event as well. Both noted how hard county staff had worked to help bring the St James to Fairfax County. (The St James had originally looked at Alexandria, but that ended up falling through.)
The founders of this incredible facility are Kendrick Ashton and Craig Dixon. Prior to co-founding The St. James and becoming Co-CEO, Kendrick was a Founding Member and Managing Director of Perella Weinberg Partners, an independent, global financial services firm. Kendrick began his career at Goldman Sachs where he executed mergers and acquisitions as well as debt and equity financings for companies across a broad range of industries. He earned a law degree from the University of Chicago Law School, an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and an AB from the College of William & Mary.
Craig Dixon is also a Co-Founder and Co-CEO of The St. James. Prior to founding The St. James, he was Senior Counsel at Smithfield Foods, a Fortune 250 global food business, where he focused on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and was general counsel of one of its largest business units. Prior to joining Smithfield, he was a senior lawyer at McGuireWoods focusing on mergers and acquisitions and international project finance. Craig began his career as a law clerk to Honorable James Spencer of the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. He is an alumnus of the College of William & Mary, William & Mary School of Law and Harvard Business School.
The St James will a great addition to the county and a great facility for casual and semi-pro athletes alike.