Crown Residences at Sydney’s landmark One Barangaroo debuts “branded residences”
Arriving home from overseas to an empty apartment can make for a cold and lonely welcome. But it will be a different experience at Crown Residences at One Barangaroo, which will offer apartment owners all the facilities and services of the building’s six-star Crown Barangaroo Sydney hotel.
Ahead of arrival, the resident can alert the Crown Concierge and arrange the fridge to be stocked with fresh produce, a cleaner to spruce the rooms, and of course some fresh flowers to be arranged.
Instead of a reluctant return, owners will sweep back into a bright, gleaming, well-stocked and fragrant apartment.
The experience is just one offered by Crown Residences, which marks the arrival of branded residences – private residences serviced by a luxury hotel brand – on Australian shores.
Premium apartment bedroom
Branded residences were pioneered in 1920s New York, with Fifth Avenue’s Sherry-Netherland Hotel and Madison Avenue’s The Carlyle Hotel – a famous New York home for the Kennedys – offering apartment living alongside the regular hotel.
That trend faded, but branded residences have made a comeback with luxury hotel operators like Four Seasons and Ritz-Carlton leveraging their brands to provide residences for buyers wanting a hotel-like experience.
Branded residences reached their apogee with Knightsbridge’s One Hyde Park, the uber luxury residences linked to the Mandarin Oriental hotel that opened in March 2009. Property tycoon Nick Candy recently sold his One Hyde Park penthouse for 160 million pounds – a record for a British home.
The Residences at One Barangaroo, due for completion in early 2021, is tapping into this trend, offering 82 apartments with a starting price of $A9.5 million.
The apartments in the Wilkinson Eyre-designed One Barangaroo will epitomise luxury, with floor-to-ceiling windows offering views of Sydney Harbour and the Opera House; and each boasting bespoke interior layouts crafted by New York design firm, Meyer Davis.
Premium apartment living room
Erin van Tuil, Director of One Barangaroo at Knight Frank, says brand affinity has helped drive the growth of branded residences globally. “People have an affinity with a particular brand,” she says. “You know that wherever you are in the world, if you walk into that hotel you have the comfort of knowing what you’re going to get.”
A brand, she adds, lends a stamp of approval to a development. “They know that something with Crown Resorts brand is going to be of significant quality and the best thing in the market.” Crown Resorts operates luxury hotels in Melbourne and Perth.
Above all, buyers of branded residences are seeking lifestyle. “It’s a lifestyle choice, a lifestyle decision,” van Tuil says. “You’ve got brilliant economic benefits, but for most people it’s lifestyle – you just want to live somewhere easy. People are leading busier, global lives and they want more convenient living.”
The Residences will have access to all the Crown Barangaroo Sydney’s amenities, a harbour-view gymnasium, separate VIP pool areas with 25-metre pool, tennis court and six-star spa facility.
It is perhaps access to the hotel’s services, orchestrated by a 24-hour concierge, however, that really marks the Residences as unique. The concierge can organise a private chef or sommelier; order a cheese burger from room service at 3am; or make a priority booking in one of the 14 different bars and restaurants in the precinct.
And if you don’t want to change linen yourself, ever again, you can arrange for house-keeping on a daily basis. It can all be done, along with personal shopping, baby sitting and personal training.
While lifestyle is the main driver of branded residences, buyers are also attracted to their impressive economics.
Premium apartment bathroom
Research commissioned by Knight Frank found that Australian branded residences will likely fetch a premium of 25-35 per cent compared to non-branded residences. Price differentials between branded and non-branded residences in some Asian cities are as high as 132 per cent.
The Crown development comes as the prime market’s performance in Sydney has been strong, which will add to buyer interest. Van Tuil notes the Sydney prime market grew 5.7 per cent in the last 12 months and has now spent 21 consecutive quarters in the top 15 global cities for growth.
Apartment living also does lower hold costs, with no need for cleaners, gardeners or payment of land tax. “There is an economic benefit of moving into a branded residence where everything is taken care of for you,” van Tuil says.
Premium apartment kitchen
The Residences have been attracting very strong interest, with buyers ranging from downsizers, city -residence seekers, and others looking to use the apartments as second or third homes.
The branded residences fill an important gap in the market. Sydneysiders who wanted to live in a prime or super prime apartment had their option really only limited to penthouses.
“People in Sydney have been really delighted to see what they would be able to purchase elsewhere in the world now available here in Sydney for them,” van Tuil says.
“We’re thrilled with the response, we’re really pleased with the take up and how well they’ve been received by Sydneysiders. People are really excited about it,” she adds.
“It’s very much once in a lifetime. We can’t see where this will ever be replicated again in Sydney in terms of location, size of building and architecture. Where else in Sydney Harbour could this happen again?”