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Trendwatching is back with a pattern that they call five star living, where property developers and high-end resort or hotels sell a home away from home to the super dumb but loaded.
They put a whole pile of luxury living brand experience about it, but what they are seeing is the window dressing not the trends in five star living. Five star hotels are capital intensive and unless you have high occupancy all the time, expensive.
Apartment complexes can draw on the service aspects of five star hotels; but farm off a lot of the capital risk to apartment purchasers and still charge them for premium rate services. Five star living is about hotels hedging their bets in a post-September 11 world. I realise that this is a less romantic and stylish explanation of this trend, but its all about the money.
Mandarin Oriental have built suites in their Hyde Park hotel which would be a great example of five star living. Luxury brands like Giorgio Armani have extended into interior design to try and capitalise on this trend in combination with luxury property developers.
You also have people like the Trump Organisation extending themselves from real estate into hotel services and tourism in the opposite direction with its golfing themed resorts. More five star living related content here.
Apple spoof product lifecycle article which can be found here. Its funny because there are a lot of underlying themes which are close to the truth as consumers see it.
Finally, the New York Times have got a great interactive presidential election guide that they are going to keep updated. So go to this link, have a play and bookmark it until November. Interactive data like live dashboards in business allow you better understand the data. It makes for shareable content and is sticky in nature.