The Ultra-wealthy Are Installing Home Amenities That Rival 5-star Hotels in the Quest to Never Leave the House, From $50,000 Botox Spas to Cigar Lounges & Zoom Theaters

  • INSIDER
  • 04/6/21
Original article published by INSIDER
Written by Emma Reynolds
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People are spending more money than ever on lavish home amenities as a result of spending more time at home, moving away from cramped cities, and feeling uninspired by their current spaces. Should a pandemic ever happen again, people want to know they have everything they need on their property.
 
"Home has never been more sacred and having more space has never been more important, especially for families," Beverly Hills real-estate agent at Nourmand & Associates Rochelle Maize, who works with ultra-high-net-worth buyers and has generated more than $1 billion in home sales in her career, told Insider.
 
Unique home amenities, especially among the rich, are nothing new, but now the wealthy are putting more dollars into expanding and remodeling their kitchens, the heart of the home, as well as incorporating more wellness aspects, which wasn't a major priority before the pandemic. Coronavirus has also put a new emphasis on at-home facilities for entertainment and leisure, like movie theaters and pizza ovens, that people previously left the house to enjoy.
 

More wellness areas for spa and medical treatments

Danish and Turkish luxury property developer Adnan Sen, founder of Sen Properties, has developed some of Beverly Hills' most expensive homes. He worked with several ultra-high-net-worth individuals on tweaking floor plans to make them more flexible.
 
"We are seeing that families are requesting more home office space and bigger and grander kitchens, including second or prep kitchens as well," Sen told Insider. "We are also creating more amenities outside like putting greens, tennis courts, pickleball courts, outdoor pizza ovens, and fire pits."
 
 
Sen's latest project was developing a $39.9 million home in Beverly Hills, which includes an in-home med spa with a professional spa chair, IV drip stand for IV wellness therapy, facial steamer, infrared sauna, and signature facial products from a top-rated Beverly Hills plastic surgeon. 
 
For ultra-private folks, the installation of a med spa means nobody will see them going in and out of a clinic for services such as Botox and injectable treatments, facials, or Emsculpt, a non-invasive body-contouring treatment.
 
Installing a med spa can cost up to $50,000, Maize said, not including the thousands of dollars it costs for doctors to perform the actual treatments. Emsculpt, for example, can cost up to $4,000 or more depending on the area of the body you're working on, while Botox and injectables can climb into the $1,000 and up range.
 
"Wellness is very important in California, and I've seen homes that look like wellness retreats," she said. "This means juice bars, chef's areas, hot and cold steam rooms, infrared saunas, circadian lighting, and air filtration systems."
 
Maize has also seen actual surgery centers being installed in houses both before and during the pandemic so people can undergo full plastic surgery or even dental procedures without ever leaving the house."When we're building these houses, we're building entire palliative care wings," Toronto-based interior designer Lori Morris, who creates extravagant homes in Canada and the United States for clients inspired by their travels, told Insider. "Some 50- and 60-year-olds building new homes are thinking into their future. The word 'modernize' isn't necessarily just for finishing and textures, but it's taking anything one would get elsewhere, like at a nursing home or a hospital, salon, or spa, and it's putting it right into your home."
 

Gyms, movie theaters, and 'party houses'

In the COVID-19 era, Sen has also seen home theaters transformed into Zoom rooms for homeschooling and business purposes, as well as homework areas for kids, luxury COVID-19 sanitation rooms with personally branded cleaning supplies, fitness centers with virtual trainers, and luxurious garages that can transform into a ballroom for at-home events.
 
Sen said his California-based clients are increasing their overall renovation and building budgets by 20% to 30% specifically for additional amenities. 
 
A client of Maize's and his family, who asked to remain anonymous for privacy reasons, recently moved from a $3.5 million home in Manhattan to Los Angeles' Westwood neighborhood for a more laid back quality of life. They hoped to make their home feel like a resort.
 
"We spend lots of time at home and will eventually entertain a lot as well," he told Insider. "We love having an open floor plan and all of the indoor-outdoor space. Being able to entertain, watch a movie, and work out all in our house-made living in LA instead of NYC a no-brainer."
 
A few amenities he's installing: a putting green in the backyard, an infrared sauna off the state-of-the-art fitness center (which was once a home theater), a hibachi grill in the kitchen, a butler's pantry, and a pizza oven in the garden.
 
The family bought the home, instead of building one, but wanted to add more amenities so they didn't have to leave the premises activities at the country club or gym.
 
Earlier this year, Morris finished a project in Canada with an entertainment level that featured a bowling alley, cheese-tasting room, movie theater, game areas, TV area, full bar, cured meat room, a humidor, and a cigar lounge. You then walk out to the manicured landscaped outdoor area with the pools, tennis courts, basketball courts, and alfresco dining areas. She's also created marble-laden wine bars and French Deco-inspired movie theaters.
 
"It's no longer just having a private chef, but a restaurant setting, a private dining area, or a separate party house that houses a club-like atmosphere so they feel like they're in a hotel," Morris said.
 

Extra space for kids' playtime

Catering to the whole family is crucial in this day and age, and children's playrooms are important for parents whose kids aren't getting the same amount of socialization at school. Therefore, they've created over-the-top play sanctuaries for their kids.

 
A home in Houston, designed for an athlete and his young family, features a custom playroom by Houston-based interior designer Nina Magon. No detail has been left to chance: The room has a custom-built playhouse costing $30,000, cute polka-dot wallpaper, and whimsical cloud-shaped ceiling lights. She also created a fun home theater and a beautiful wine room.
 
A custom playroom from Houston-based interior designer Nina Magon. Nina Magon
 
"My clients might spend half a million to $1 million on amenity spaces," Magon said, citing bowling alleys, indoor basketball courts, and hair salons as some examples. 
 
 

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