Design Trends of Luxury Homes
The technological revolution of the 21st Century has made its way into the luxury mansions and dream homes of the affluent, and even more so throughout the homes of Silicon Valley’s elite, and while the Dutch and English Colonial style still pervades itself among residential architects, technological innovations of all kinds are being implemented into residential design. The technological trends reflect a growing sense of environmentalism, and come from the popularity surrounding sustainability and the advent of ecological design through nonprofits such as the United States Green Building Council. These are some of the most popular features.
Smart windows, or smart glass as it is commonly called, is an innovative feature that began in commercial architecture and has recently found its way into residential design. Windows are constructed with a thin electrochromic film compressed between two panes, which can either be controlled manually by any smart phone, tablet, or computer, or can be programmed to automatically react to the outside environment. Companies such as View, based in California, are beginning to provide dynamic windows to the luxury market, which help to control temperature, light levels, and can even change color if so desired.
One feature of luxury homes that is becoming more popular is automation. Along with automated windows, other processes in the home are becoming automated as well, and are now able to be controlled via smart phone or by touch screen panels installed directly into the house, thereby eliminating the need for extraneous devices. Companies such as Crestron Electronics provide remote-controlled door locks, lighting, audio, and appliances, with personalization options for each individual in the home. Sensors designed by General Electric are able to monitor water quality, electrical use, and bacteria levels, giving you up to date readings via smart phone wherever you are.
Design trends extend beyond the gadgetry, however, to include a greater sense of place in the surrounding landscape. The modern aesthetic that is now popular among the rich and famous gives greater emphasis to the location of the home in the natural setting, with attention paid towards the placement of windows, the arrangement of rooms, and the design of the overall property. Internationally acclaimed architects such as Herzog & de Meuron are spearheading the ecological design movement, combining design features and the natural landscape to create some of the most stunning luxury mansions on the planet. Features such as living walls and green roofs are becoming more popular among the urban elite, providing both a physical and psychological benefit to urban living.
While mansions across the country are becoming increasingly more lavish and extravagant, many have chosen to embrace the technological and ecological revolution as a function of their wealth, rather than pursue the same old luxuries of past generations. The intelligent mansion of today prides itself on efficiency and innovation. It has become a race of who can implement the most interactive home experience, complete with solar panels and geothermal heating, automated home systems, and built-in monitoring, ensuring homeowners and their guests enjoy the most comfortable experience possible.