By Jody McCutcheon
Here at Eluxe, we’ve written at length about luxury homes and sustainability. After all, it’s our ethos, our raison d’être. Yet we also regularly discuss health and wellness. Unfortunately, these various elements don’t always meet up in one article. Today, I’m excited to be able to put them all together. This is a story of hypoallergenic luxury residences. Yes, these are homes that take the “allergy” out of “allergy season” – something many of us, who suffer what seems to be a never-ending cold in spring, will welcome.
In fact, according to the CDC, some 6.1 million children and 20 million adults suffer allergic reactions to pollen from trees, grasses and weeds in America alone. As an allergy sufferer myself, I know from experience how there’s no escape from the terrible feeling of constant sneezing, sinus pressure and stuffy nose—not even at that ultimate of refuges, home.
Thankfully, some developers are changing the game with designs on homes embracing year-round strategies to promote clean air, without sacrificing luxury or sustainability. Below are two such developments.
The world has heaped praise on international development firm Troon Pacific, and rightfully so. Renowned for its environmentally sustainable luxury residences, the San-Francisco-based firm also maintains offices in Arizona and Norway. Troon does everything from single-family homes to master-planned communities, including multiple LEED platinum residences.
Along with the extravagant comforts of radiant floors, car vaults that lower vehicles into underground storage spaces and stealth tech such as vanishing television sets and invisible speakers mounted in ceilings, glass panels and gardens, these beautiful homes provide many environmentally friendly features. This list includes rainwater harvesting, solar electric and hot-water systems, passive and active ventilation systems, EnergyStar appliances and water-saving fixtures and landscaping. The dwellings themselves are built from sustainable and eco-gentle construction materials, including the use of wood from certified sustainable forests.
Troon homes are equipped to help preserve owners’ health, especially during allergy season. Look no further than the installation of MERV-16 air filtration systems, which are ideal for clearing the air of dust, cooking oils, smoke, insecticide and other contaminants. Besides these air filtration systems, Troon homes offer hard flooring surfaces like marble and wood to minimize the capture of dust and other allergens. The company’s PR department is proud to be able to say that Troon’s stringent air quality standards have allowed a family with a child suffering from cancer to buy a Troon home rather than being forced to live in isolation.
Troon residences maximize natural light while facilitating integration of indoor-outdoor living. They also employ water purification systems and underslab barriers that protect against radon and other harmful gas infiltrations. And they eschew low-VOC (volatile organic compound) paints and adhesives. Other health and wellbeing features include saunas, steam rooms and home gyms.
Everyone wants to go home. Now there’s even more of a reason to want to.
Billed as the ultra-luxury condominium coming to Chicago, 1000M is a LEED-certified project from the mind of architect Helmut Jahn, with interior design by Kara Mann. According to a company sales update, this 74-storey, 323-unit project has been downtown Chicago’s top-selling development since sales launched last fall. Perhaps this is no surprise, considering Chicago recently ranked as the sixth worst US city for allergies.
1000M doesn’t even break ground until 2019, with an expected completion date of 2022. Yet the project has already garnered multiple awards, among them the Modern Luxury Interiors’ Best New Development of 2018 and the 2018 Gold Award for Best Presentation Center from the National Association of Home Builders. (Yes, the latter seems more about marketing than design, but hey—the developers have talked a good talk. Let’s hope they walk a good walk.)
In terms of green score, 1000M performs rather well. As mentioned, it’s LEED-certified, in addition to being registered with the United States Green Building Council. All condo residences are fitted with LED lighting. They’re also energy-efficient in terms of appliances, heating and cooling systems and hot-water heating, and all are equipped with low-water-consumption toilets. Window glazing provides an optimal contrast between high light transmittance and low reflectance, contributing to a balance between occupant comfort and further energy efficiency. The utilization of locally harvested and supplied, high-recycled-content building materials also contributes to the project’s sustainability, as does its use of low-VOC-content paints, adhesives, sealants and other interior materials.
As for luxury, 1000M’s splendor is evident the moment you enter this condominium on the shores of Lake Michigan, as the two-storey lobby exudes elegance and grandeur. Explore the building a little further and you’ll find a fitness centre, library lounge and cinema theatre. There’s a musical conservatory for concerts and art exhibitions, an outdoor garden area, an indoor winter garden and a sundeck. 1000M also provides spa services (including a virtual meditation lounge) for people AND for dogs. There’s even an elevator exclusively reserved for pets, to separate them from allergy sufferers.
Speaking of which, what would a hypoallergenic luxury residence be without an effective air filtration system? Outdoor air is diligently filtered before being dispatched to each condo residence, thus minimizing pollutants, allergens and dust. This turns the home into a sneeze-free refuge for anyone who suffers from allergies.
Luxury, sustainability and good health via allergy-filtration—what more could a beautiful home offer?