All industries have buzzwords, and residential real estate is no exception. From “state-of-the-art” fitness centers and “resort-style” pools to “breathtaking” views and “spectacular” layouts.
But the most prominent real estate buzzword in recent times has to be “luxury”. Originally “luxury” was the way we described the material world. Hardwood floors, quartz countertops, Carrara marble tile. Then, things got more personal, with “designer” fixtures and color schemes, “chef-inspired” kitchens, and “artisanal” coffee in the lobby.
Then, following the lead of the hospitality industry, residential luxury became a matter of elevated service offerings: spa treatments, valet dry cleaning, concierge services, and VIP access to exclusive experiences.
The Buzzword Life Cycle
That trajectory of dilution is the fate of most any buzzword. It may start as a differentiator but quickly becomes what the audience expects and then takes for granted. So we asked ourselves the question, if every apartment is a luxury apartment, then what does “luxury” really mean today? How does it convey that real sense of comfort, and how does it feel emotionally and not just tactically?
And that presents to us savvy real estate pros a blank canvas—an opportunity to redefine the buzzword. To evolve a word like “luxury” to break through the clutter as it once did, and better align with consumers’ changing motivators.
Today’s multi-family and condo dwellers are increasingly searching for much more than location and price. They want and need more from their home—especially since the pandemic turned so many residences into workspaces, classrooms, playrooms, and all-purpose rooms. People desire the luxury of time and space to live every facet of their lives in comfort. They seek a luxury not of things but of feelings—better connected to their own aspirations and to something bigger than themselves.
Making Luxury Mean Something
Today, more than ever, people crave a sense of community. They want to connect with friends and businesses over that shared purpose. So developers and operators of residential real estate, and their agency partners like us, must strive to facilitate a deeper connection to what true luxury means at its core in order to deliver (and communicate) a next-level lifestyle. One that has evolved beyond luxurious features, awesome amenities, and outstanding services to a brand that provides meaningful human connections. That sounds like a good place to be. For all of us.