THE FUTURE OF A LIFE OF WELL-BEING Wellness is set to radically change the nature of prime developments, with a concern for residents’ physical and mental health increasingly determining the design of such schemes. This revolution will also extend to the offices, retail and restaurants within a mixed-use scheme. As our research highlights, the best developments will incorporate indoor and outdoor physical and digital wellness experiences. But there will also be more emphasis on a development’s impact on the wider community and neighbourhood, with the aim of creating a long-term legacy. Integrating culture into a scheme adds not only to the value of the homes, but also to the surrounding area, uplifting its cultural capital. A focus on wellness, culture and civic engagement will put a development on the map, as this research compiled by Tom Savigar of the leading placemaking consultancy Avansere, underlines in this report. Northacre has long been known for creating legacy developments but in Q3 2021 they made a notable shift to promote wellness and make it a key part of the retail leasing strategy for their first mixed-use development, The Broadway.
"We have been developing residences in prime central London for more than 30 years. Community has always been at the heart of our developments, but with The Broadway, our vision is to meet the changing shift and precedence that wellbeing is having on our lives now – as we emerge from the pandemic. The development strives to create a destination that has ‘living well’ at its heart – in fact the best address in the world for living well – a destination that fosters the community and promotes health and wellbeing.” - Niccolò Barattieri di San Pietro CEO Northacre
Orchard Place, a new boulevard linking Victoria Street to St James' Park tube station
BACKGROUND The research details the key role that wellness will play in the design of prime developments and their appeal to buyers. Such schemes will increasingly prioritise a sustainable legacy and the wellbeing of the communities they are creating. Tom Savigar comments:
"A life lived well will mean a focus on being connected to local communities, cultural experiences and enhancing environments." These findings coincide with separate research showing that 90% of luxury homeowners worldwide say that their personal wellness is their top priority, and that real estate offerings which allow them to practice personal wellness (including meditation spaces, home spas and home gyms) are extremely attractive. The Global Wellness Institute, the American not-for-profit body that empowers wellness worldwide, reported last autumn that the wellness real estate market almost doubled between 20172020, rising from $148 to $275 billion. This expansion is set to continue with many developments of this type now under construction globally. The global wellness market is now worth $1.5 trillion and is growing at 5%-10% a year, according a study by the McKinsey consultancy published in January 2022. Nick Whitten, JLL Head of UK Residential Research adds,
58% of Londoners agree that being recognised as a ‘local’ and feeling part of a community in their area improves their sense of well being.
"Our analysis shows that house prices and rents have grown more strongly in areas across the UK which score more highly in surveys trying to measure well-being. The 10 highest scoring local authorities in the ONS’ Life Satisfaction survey saw an average 5% more house price growth and rental value growth over the past 12 months, when compared with the 10 areas scoring lowest for life satisfaction." Against this background, biophilic design - which ensures that a development is connected with nature - is set to become key to prime developments. This means more balconies, floor to ceiling windows, more fitness and spa facilities and more green walls. The signature of a prime development will be attractive, nurtured outdoor areas, with seating and awnings. These natural oases will calm the mind and body. Wider economic benefits can flow from such facilities: better access to green spaces would save £2.1 billion a year in health costs. Nick Whitten comments:
“Shifting living priorities have re-emphasised the desire for vibrant, social, and attractive communities in which to live. Having elements of a rural life in urban villages with a combination of green spaces, outdoor markets, shops, cafes and restaurants has been proven to enhance community cohesion and improve the well-being of those living there.”
The wellness real estate market almost doubled between 2017-2020, rising from $148 to $275 billion
The survey’s findings highlight the new importance of wellness activities and spaces in the choice of area in which to live. This is key for 69% of people and 77% of Londoners.
There will also be more focus on culture of every kind - from which there should payback for the developer and the community. Michael Squire, partner at Squire & Partners, architect to The Broadway, comments:
71% of people said that they would experience less mental stress if businesses made physical connection with others easier and more pleasant
“We want to introduce biophilia into all developments. It is incredibly important to people, because they feel significantly more in touch with themselves when they are in touch with nature. Also any development, of any scale, needs to have a cultural focus of some sort or another – a connection to a past, a public space, a farmer’s market, a restaurant, a few retail units. Some say culture it is an extra cost, but it gives extra meaning to customers. When you put culture in the heart of a development, you actually add pounds a square foot on the development and the surrounding area.” Woody Bruce co-founder of Bruce Gillingham Pollard comments:
The survey’s findings highlight the new importance of wellness activities and spaces in the choice of area in which to live. This is key for 69% of people and 77% of Londoners
“Having culture in a small, local experience is hard to do, but when done well it uplifts the spirit of a community. Having that connection with a cultural experience, having something interesting and entertaining makes all the difference to a successful development.” The surge in interest in wellness had been accompanied by a new desire to buy more locally, and this trend is also set to grow. Separate research from Accenture indicates that this attachment to civic engagement and localism is a worldwide trend: 79% of consumers plan to continue shopping in neighbourhood stores and 84% want to buy more locallysourced products in the longer term. This will alter the product range and other aspects of the retail offer within developments, putting localism to the fore. Woody Bruce, co-founder of Bruce Gillingham Pollard, says:
84% of consumers want to buy more locallysourced products in the longer term
"Hyper localism is here to stay. Shopping locally during lockdown, people have found a refreshing reconnection to their local area. You now feel that giving back and helping out is more important to consumers, and therefore more important to retailers. Being more for the neighbourhood is key." Antoine Jaubard, L’Oréal Luxe Retail Design & Innovation Director adds:
“Companies are thinking and acting too global. And that thinking is missing the point of retailing. It is very powerful for brands to show they know where they are, and that they’re not here to pollute or to disrupt a community dynamic. The more communal and civic they can be, the more powerful their impact can be because it's meaningful. If you spend your money in my store, and then I give back by planting trees halfway across the world, it doesn't do anything for you and doesn't do anything for me. But if you buy a product in my store, and I use the profits to organise a community garden nearby, or provide free space for community initiatives, then we have a better association between us. You are having a direct impact on your immediate surroundings and that's a very powerful feeling to have together.”
Move Well at Orchard Place, SW1
THE FUTURE OF A LIFE OF WELL-BEING SURVEY The Future of a Life of Well-being survey results were gathered through a quantitative survey of 2,000 Britons by Opinium. The survey shows that many people (50%), and in particular Londoners (58%) agree that being recognised as a ‘local’ and feeling part of a community in their area improves their sense of well being. Some 61% of Londoners agree that being able to engage with art, music and culture in their community also improves their overall sense of wellbeing. The survey’s findings highlight the new importance of wellness activities and spaces in the choice of area in which to live. This is key for 69% of people and 77% of Londoners. A lack of access to a support network of friends and family is the biggest source of stress, second only to a lack of basic medical care. A physical connection with other people reduces stress in the view of 73% of those surveyed; 71% said that they would experience less mental stress if businesses made physical connection with others easier and more pleasant.
77% of Londoners, and 69% of people, feel wellness activities and spaces in the choice of area in which to live is key
of people said that they would experience less mental stress if businesses made physical connection with others easier and more pleasant
58% 61% of Londoners agree that being recognised as a ‘local’ and feeling part of a community in their area improves their sense of well being
of Londoners agree that being able to engage with art, music and culture in their community also improves their overall sense of wellbeing
The research undertaken by Avansere encompasses the results of a survey conducted by Opinium and insights from key figures in architecture, retail and fitness. They are: Michael Squire, architect and founder at Squire & Partners; Woody Bruce, co-founder of leading retail, restaurant and leisure property consultancy Bruce Gillingham Pollard; Jason de Savary, founder of Core Collective, the London fitness studio network and Antoine Jaubard, Luxe Retail Design & Innovation Director at L’Oréal.