Shaping up to be one of the major factors affecting the latest architectural and design trends, well-being and wellness-centred living are affecting everything from clothing manufacturing, to the way gyms operate, to how cities are designed. This global movement towards health-conscious living and caring for the environment from veganism to climate change has all but avoided everyday design. Wellness-centred architecture is now the fastest growing trend in the construction industry and is also underpinning what luxury home buyers are expecting as an integral consideration in the design of their homes.
Return to Nature
Seeing a home as an escape from the everyday hectic life is driving the “less is more” mantra – designers and architects are getting rid of the ostentatious and the desire to make a loud statement. Modelling living spaces after calming sanctuaries, with natural tones and sustainable materials that evoke a sense of refined simplicity, is becoming an “in” approach to design this year more than ever.
“Buyers want natural materials and we are finding more innovative and subtle ways to show luxury through the use of raw stone, raw wood and metals,” says Dara Huang, Founder of Design Haus Liberty. “There are so much more stories to tell with ethically sourced products and this is resonating strongly with homeowners.” Read more about Design Haus Liberty here.
Spa At Home
Water features and spa-like bathrooms – always a big consideration for a luxury home design – are also topping the wish lists of home buyers. Taking cues from the world’s best spas and hotels, designers are incorporating spa-like features into the design of private residential bathrooms. This includes walk-in showers with head-to-toe shower jets, towel warmers and oversized soaker bathtubs to create an ultimate setting of comfort, relaxation and a feeling of wellness.
Latest bathroom design trends are reflecting the urge of the homeowners to transport to a spa setting the minute they step into their bathrooms, exemplifying how wellness has become a greater cultural trend. A big hit is bold and sultry bathroom designs that evoke indulgent high-end experiences. Avid wellness buffs also look for bespoke features like heated or cooled vanity drawers for skincare and aromatherapy with HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Airconditioning) scenting.
Heart of the House
High-end living demands frequent entertaining and dining. FORBES magazine cites that appliance-lined, commercial-grade kitchens are considered to be a must for luxury property buyers and buyers are expecting nothing less than high-tech kitchen facilities even if they don’t spend much time cooking themselves. And with any fully-stocked kitchen, auxiliary spaces also play a key role – walk-in pantries can rival the sizes of some kitchens in high-end homes.
Advances in home technologies have led technology integration into kitchen appliances to become one of the biggest design trends in 2019 and the push towards automation only continues to grow this year. One-touch faucets, programmable refrigerators, automatic wine fridges are must-haves for high-end households where a kitchen is seen as the heart of a home. Afterall, an efficient kitchen can cook healthy meals to create wellness in the family, too.
Room for More
Superlative storage space continues to dominate the requirement lists of homebuyers, particularly when it comes to a dressing room. Seen as an extension of the bedroom, a dressing room is a space to store and display collections of purchases and high-end garments. With many companies offering bespoke closet options that can be tailored for any homeowner’s individual preference, interior designers are also spending much of their time customising dressing rooms, from lighting to mirrors, as spaces where owners spend much of their time beyond just trying on clothes.
Working (Out) from Home
Sweating it out at the gym may not seem appealing to everyone and it comes as no surprise that private fitness facilities within residential properties are among the popular features required in a high-end home. In state-of-the-art home gyms, technology and emphasis on wellness are of equal importance, with equipment and high-tech features rivalling or surpassing the offerings of even the most exclusive luxury boutique gyms. Read about how this homeowner did creative work for a home gym to enjoy a sense of wellness here.
A good view is important when doing a prolonged gym activity, like running on a treadmill. Some luxury home designs take advantage of picturesque views to bring the scenery into a home gym or take advantage of the indoor/outdoor approach to bring in natural temperature and fresh air. As space might allow it, a sauna and indoor or outdoor pools for post-workout relaxation can elevate a home’s value in a wellness buff’s eyes.
Aiming for Timelessness
With the popularisation of architectural and interior design images on social media platforms and websites like Pinterest, homeowners design palettes are getting more discerning than ever. The shifting focus from the opulent and ostentatious to mindful luxury that lasts is underpinned by the wellness and sustainability trends of recent years. Homebuyers are shifting away from the artificial to more simple, raw materials and quality.
“The Asia market specifically is seeing a shift,” notes Huang about the changing design sensibilities in the East. “Ten years ago, the Upper House in Hong Kong launched with panoramic cityscape, sumptuous, picture-window bathrooms, and elegant minimalist interiors. It was internationally sophisticated chic and utterly timeless and I think the Asian market is recapturing this and the increasing desire for homes with a timeless feel and style.”