The world’s largest residential brand YOO has led the way on the art of branded residences, driven by design flair and knowledge of the HNWI homeowner’s needs.
According to Savills Spotlight on Branded Residences 2022, there is continued resilience and strong growth in the branded sector of real estate, as the number of high-net-worth-individuals (HNWI) continue to increase three years into the pandemic.
Savills’ analysis also shows that since the pandemic, the desire and need for more “personalised, spacious and private accommodations” takes precedence for property buyers, with wellness and wellbeing remaining a most attractive lifestyle component.
The evolution of branded residences have shown that the prioritising of modern lifestyle needs is what sets them apart from other type of properties. While this demand has largely been driven by hotel brands that have dominated the sector before, the past few years have seen the rise of non-hotel brands, who have created more of a diverse offering.
Phillippe Starck and John Hitchcox
Among these non-hotel brands, UK-based YOO have consistently led the pack. First launched in 1999 by renowned design maverick Philippe Starck and property entrepreneur John Hitchcox, the company, regarded as the world’s largest residential brand, can be credited for being pioneers of a lifestyle-led, branded residence movement.
Their design-driven, high concept residences – each distinctively unique due to the celebrity designers that helm them – have turned their properties into “collector’s items”. Andrew Pang, managing director of YOO Asia-Pacific, said in a South China Morning Post feature, “Our focus is on people’s lifestyles, and how designs can add value to the developers and residents. All our projects are unique as we don’t believe in ‘cookie cutting’”.
With both YOO Inspired by Starck and YOO Studio leading as key players in the top 10 of residential brands, it’s clear that their hold over the branded residence segment is firm. This has spurred the brand’s significant expansion across over 40 plus hotspot cities within fast-growing regions, including here in Asia Pacific.
Here’s a look at 6 exciting YOO projects across the globe:
#1 The Lakes by YOO, Cotswolds
The Lakes by YOO is surrounded by 10 beautiful lakes
Set on an 850-acre estate in idyllic Cotswolds, a beautiful countryside cluster of villages and towns favoured by A-list celebrities such as Kate Moss, Hugh Grant and David and Victoria Beckham, The Lakes by YOO is a secure estate within easy reach of London and is home to 165 luxury family homes. The estate’s superlative facilities include a full-service spa, a restaurant, sailing club and a wealth of family-friendly activities, from kayaking to zip-wiring, offering nature’s escape with all the comforts of modern living.
#2 YOO8 Serviced by Kempinski, Kuala Lumpur
The water lounge that connects Towers A and B at YOO8
Marking the brand’s first foray into Malaysia, the twin residential towers – with its unique ‘twisted’ look – will take its place in the heart of Kuala Lumpur City Centre. Located at the edge of the historic embassies quarter and a stone’s throw from the most popular district of Bukit Bintang, the towers are part of the larger 8 Conlay development, which will also house a retail podium and the Kempinski Hotel Kuala Lumpur. Coincidentally another first for Malaysia, Kempinski’s dedicated hospitality team will be on hand to provide YOO8 residents with an extensive range of personal services.
The design of YOO8’s interior is another interesting factor, with two award-winning designers at its helm. Steve Leung presents two designs for Tower A inspired by wood and water elements, while Kelly Hoppen created the spring concept and an urban concept designs in Tower B.
#3 YOO One, Pune
The outdoor seating at YOO One overlooks the city
Showcasing the formula of localised collaboration that has produced great results, this six-tower landmark in Pune, India brings together three key players – Tribeca, the city’s foremost property developer, YOO, and Sussanne Khan, deemed India’s top interior designer.
With 243 apartments emerging from a 200-acre urban forest reserve, YOO One stands out for its distinctive 1.5-acre rooftop terrace, with a rooftop restaurant and other lifestyle amenities, including a Zen Garden, Amphitheatre, tennis court, herb garden, terrace spa and more up at the terrace. The interior takes on a timeless luxury concept, designed to tastefully complement the floor-to-ceiling views and the surrounding natural beauty.
#4 KHUN by YOO, Bangkok
The lobby of KHUN by YOO
Even among a city full of skyscrapers, KHUN stands singularly apart. With its bright copper core and insulated glass façade, YOO’s first full-scale branded residence in Thailand is like a beacon in its neighbourhood of Thong Lo, only Bangkok’s most trendy and popular district. Birthed from a meeting of minds between Thai real estate giant Sansiri and Philippe Starck himself, the ‘industrial heritage’ concept of KHUN comes to life in this bold interpretation.
Balancing the classic and bold, as well as the raw and refined is what makes Starck and YOO’s design ethos (and their resulting offerings) so outstanding. KHUN’s more expressive and richer post-World War II inspirations, such as art murals and classic French chandeliers are tempered with modern sofas; its luxe marble countertops and art frames offset with raw concrete walls to an effortless classic-meets-contemporary effect.
#5 L’Hymne des Trembles, Quebec
L’Hymne des Trembles offers an exclusive ski lift for residents
Promised to deliver the ultimate ski village experience, YOO’s first branded ski resort in Canada has another key focus: To realise a truly sustainable project that aims to be “at one with nature” both aesthetically and in its build. Launched this year, the project in South Quebec’s Lauretian Mountain range will have 500 residential units – including Mountain Homes, Mountain Towns and Mountain Condos, creating a ski village-like community.
YOO’s signature understated elegance will come into play in L’Hymne des Trembles, albeit with a touch of contemporary European flair. There will be three interior moods to choose from, each with their own materials selection. Drawing inspiration from its natural landscape and paying tribute to the quintessential ski retreat, residents can opt for the stone-based Modern Rustic concept, the wood concept in Retreat, or Serene, which tries to capture the purity of winter’s snow.
#6 Olympia, London
Artist’s impression of the cultural landmark in London
In a diversification from branded residences and residential interior projects, YOO is taking on a £1.3 billion regeneration project Olympia a historic exhibition venue. The regeneration will see Olympia transform into an arts, culture, entertainment, events and hospitality destination with an addition of five live performance venues, a creative arts school, two globally-renowned hotels, restaurants and eateries, creative offices and 2.5 acres of public spaces and gardens.
With its indisputable track record in creating sought-after properties around the world, YOO’s brand imprint looks set to keep growing. This in turn feeds the demand for branded residences in cities like ours here in Kuala Lumpur, which is only just beginning to understand the true value of such properties.
8 Conlay in Kuala Lumpur is selling Tower A and Tower B of its branded residences, YOO8 serviced by Kempinski. To get in touch or visit our 8 Conlay Gallery, contact us here.