Firepit - The Mark Company
January 3, 2016

At A Glance: Amenity Design

Innovative features that pack punch

Amenities are vitally important to the success of any residential development. Communal spaces offer the chance to work, socialize and relax outside the home. Today’s urban buyer expects robust amenities that support an experiential lifestyle. The Mark Company advises our developer clients on making smart design programming decisions that create the best return on investment. Our deep understanding of buyer preferences and real estate design trends combines to ensure that our new condominium developments are positioned for success.

Smart design starts with the buyer. Sophisticated urban buyers are looking for more than a great fitness center. They want thoughtfully-designed common areas that are equal parts form and function. Target buyer age and lifestyle all factor heavily into the implementation of unit mixes, finishes and amenities that later support an effective condominium marketing and sales strategy. We sat down with design expert, Alan Mark, to discuss which amenities and programming nuances pack the most punch.

Below are five amenities and programming details that will set your development apart from the rest and offer buyers features they will actually use.


One: Thoughtful Lobby

A residential lobby requires a strong sense of arrival and beautiful design that sets the tone for the entire building, but the space must also be functional. A few practical design elements will take the space to the next level. The number one most overlooked lobby necessity is a large, dedicated space for hot and cold storage. Delivery services like Amazon, Postmates, Caviar, Blue Apron and Sprig are becoming increasingly popular in urban areas and packages in large developments add up quickly.  A sizeable room that’s easily accessible from the front desk and proportionate to the numbers of residences is crucial to maintaining organization. The room should be large enough to accommodate one or two luggage carts to help residents transport their goods.

Two: Overnight Guest Suite

An overnight guest suite is of great value to buyers who want to entertain guests but don’t necessarily have the space. The space gives price-conscious buyers the opportunity to buy a home they can afford knowing that they have access to an extra “guest room” when they need it.Thirty Five Dolores, Spire and Arterra each featured guest suites that were an attractive value-add for buyers and get used often today. Residents can reserve the space through the HOA, front desk attendant or concierge.

Three: State-of-the-Art Conference Room

Many of today’s buyers work from home but like the idea of getting outside the confines of their unit. A professional and private environment where they can work alone or even meet with a small group adds value and convenience to their living space. A large flat-screen television, teleconferencing and video conferencing capabilities will be attractive to independent entrepreneurs, global executives and tech professionals who have non-traditional careers and are used to communal work spaces.

Four: Multi-Purpose Outdoor Space

Community outdoor space is one of the most popular and commonly-used amenities. Preferably situated on an upper floor or rooftop to showcase the best views, the space should be programmed by an interior designer with ample resort-style seating, drought-resistant landscaping, barbeques and firepits. Include lit potted plants and speakers that integrate with an iPod to create a warm upscale ambiance. An outdoor movie screening area or fitness center are unique elements that will help to take the space to the next level.

Five: Pet Run and Washing Station

Many condominium buyers have pets. Give them a space to bathe them easily or walk them safely after dark. All common areas should have pet-friendly landscaping.

A residential community can have all the amenities in the world, but if they’re not designed well, they simply won’t be used. The Mark Company applies our deep knowledge of buyer preferences and real estate design best practices to advise on which amenities make the most sense for each project. Even a small boutique property can offer a few key features that have a huge impact on curb appeal and not on HOA dues.

Contact us today to learn what amenities will pack the most punch at your residential development.

About The Mark Company

The Mark Company is one of the nation’s premier urban residential marketing and sales firms. Founded by Alan Mark in 1997, The Mark Company provides a full range of core consulting services including analytics, design, marketing and sales for urban high-rises and suburban attached properties throughout the Western United States. The firm is a trusted partner to global leaders in residential development and finance, providing buyer-driven sales and marketing strategies that produce industry-leading results. The Mark Company has represented more than 10,000 residences and generated over $5 billion in sales for some of the nation’s most notable and successful developments including The Infinity in San Francisco, Evo in Los Angeles and The Martin in Las Vegas. Current projects include 181 Fremont Residences in San Francisco and SL70 in Los Angeles. A subsidiary of Pacific Union International, one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s top-performing resale brokerages, The Mark Company benefits from an enriched leadership team, enhanced technology and added global reach through its affiliation with Christie’s International.  For more information, please visit