Defining Luxury Down

In a recent article in the Wall Street Journal “De Gustibus” column, Bret Stephens talked about Defining Luxury Down, the fact that what once used to be luxurious is not longer in many respects. This article was written in reference to the real estate market in Manhattan where indeed, with the prices being charged, one would reasonably expect luxurious accommodations including high-end materials, services, locations, views, etc. Alas, this is not always proving the case. Developers frequently say something is luxurious when it is in fact basic. You see, there really is no policing system for the application of the word “luxurious” and as it becomes used more liberally and commonly, it will be diluted.

For the interior design professional who seeks to do business with the “high-end” market, it is best to remember what luxury once stood for—superb craftsmanship, not available to the masses, special order, and above all, attentive service. If that is the audience you seek, then make sure that is the level of product and service you are providing.


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