I recently completed a very luxurious master bathroom project, one with all the bells & whistles, where the homeowners spared no expense.
Was this the “best” bathroom or my “favorite” bathroom of all time? It’s beautiful of course, and I love the detail and the technology that was incorporated, but I have completed plenty of other projects that were just as functional, just as aesthetically pleasing, and nowhere near the cost. In analyzing this, I can’t help but think about the definition of luxury. It seems like this can vary wildly from one person to the next, and there isn’t a “right” opinion, or any reason to frown upon another’s decisions. My passion behind what I do for my career is truly helping clients improve their daily lives by fixing an issue, eliminating a thorn in their side, by impacting their routine with something that is as simple as not being broken, being more functional, or perhaps, being the most beautiful, luxurious item on the planet. Bottom line is that I try to make clients happy, however they define that.
Some examples of how I see clients defining luxury are: heated flooring, heated towel bars, crown moulding, steam showers, frameless glass shower enclosures, touchless faucets and toilets, grab bars, curbless showers, roll-out shelving in cabinetry, recessed lighting, multiple showerheads/body sprays/rainheads in the shower, freestanding bathtubs, speakers in the bathroom, decorative mirrors, just to name a few (okay, A LOT!). However, if I analyze these “luxury” items, are they really luxury, or are they smart decisions that make life easier, safer, and/or reduce stress in this incredibly busy environment we live in today? I could easily sway you towards the latter statement if we were to discuss the reasons why these selections are ultimately decided on. I think the answer is that clients are so busy, have high stress levels due to multiple factors (careers, kids, finances, future, etc.), and have hence changed their perspective in creating a home that really assists them in relaxing, enjoying life, and reducing overwhelm.
We no longer live in a world where one lives in a house where each room is a box, has little detail or connection to the other spaces, is solely utilitarian and exudes a blank feeling. Clients want, ask for, and are willing to pay for some or many of these “luxury” items that perhaps would be better named as “stress reducers”. I also think with the way the technology world has evolved and is heading, many of these items have already come way down in cost from when they initially were introduced onto the market. I believe this trend will continue, allowing more and more clients to incorporate them into their remodel. “Luxury” is no longer only for the small percentage of clients who have disposable income for days, we can all have our little piece or large pieces of luxury, however we define it.