Defining Luxury

‘Luxury’ has become one of the most over-used words in the marketing lexicon. What does it really mean and how is the concept of luxury changing?

What does the word ‘luxury’ make us think of?

Perhaps it conjures up images of sports cars, private jets and fabulous mansions. Or maybe a pleasurable experience such as enjoying a fine cigar, or a massage at your favourite spa. Or does luxury to us mean something even simpler, such as watching a beautiful sunset or spending a lazy morning in bed?

The fact is that ‘luxury’ can mean countless of different things to different individuals. Luxury belongs to those ephemeral terms such as happiness, beauty, style, which are quite difficult to explain and even more difficult to define.

So many times reading design books and magazines we have noticed expressions “luxury lifestyle”, “luxury living” and “luxury homes”. But what exactly do they mean? What are the indispensable attributes of luxury today?

Several years ago, these were golden taps and wall-to-wall marble. Those days are gone now.

Analyzing how perception of luxury has changed over the past few years, we have noticed the following changes:


If earlier people tended to buy tangible “status” things to demonstrate their wealth, today they prefer to buy unique experiences. These can can be anything from diving in the Galapagos Islands to space travelling. 

How did it affect Interior Design? Well, in the most direct way: people wish to have luxury experiences in their houses, whether it is a spa in their bathroom or a home cinema system. The design process has also changed according to this trend as clients expect it to become an experience also. They don’t want only to see samples of wallpaper and paint, they also want to see their future space, to feel it and to experience it. It’s about a luxury experience… a luxury service. This is the reason why 3D visuals have become a compulsory element of design presentation nowadays.


People are shifting from ‘Big Brands’ to local artisans and small boutiques. The reason is that they want to have in their houses one-of-a-kind unique objects, something no one else has. If one goes to luxury retailers, we will find the same assortment of goods no matter where we are – in London, Paris or in New York. How can the product be considered luxurious (regardless of price), if it is not original and rare? 


Another change on the luxury market today is that we have become less affected by fashion and trends. We will not buy products just because it is super popular, if we don’t like it. We want our space to be built and designed to suit our needs and taste. In this sense, luxury means customisation – from custom furniture, textiles to the smallest detail. The space has become more functional and tailored to our requirements; huge reception rooms are not integrated if not required or wine cellars, if wine is not the tipple.

Today there is no certain definition of luxury – we all have our own understanding of it. 

In other words, luxury is freedom to live the life we want

Hard work deserves luxury and Gracious Luxury Interiors can deliver.

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