You’ll want to move into an apartment after this
The new breed of development can offer five-star amenities, writes Robyn Willis
QI’m thinking of moving into an apartment but I’m worried that I’ll be limiting my lifestyle options. Do you have any advice? A There’s a lot to recommend apartment living, as long as you choose wisely, says architect Angus Henderson (pictured) from Henderson & Co.
“The first thing to look at is how well the project you are looking at is sited,” he says. “I have done a lot of multi residential in Sydney and all of the developers I’ve worked with have a very deliberate way of selecting development sites.
“Being on a primary artery for rail and bus lines is a high priority and then there’s proximity to schools, shopping centres and hospitals. They are also primarily located in green amenity.” The new breed of multi-residential developments such as Ramsgate Park at Kogarah on the old Darrell Lea site and Prime at Macquarie Park, both by JQZ, also offer an expanding range of services that most people could not afford in a traditional freestanding house, Angus says. “Previously there was a stigma attached to apartment living but now they have beautifully designed spaces and amenities that rival five-star hotels,” he says. “Some have a concierge, not just for security, but they can run services like dog walking and dry cleaning — all these additional things like booking you in with a personal trainer — that you would normally do yourself. That’s to bring people into the apartment way of living. Some have indoor and outdoor gyms and outdoor running tracks over their roofs.
“They have music rooms with pianos so you can have a tutor come in to teach your child, or they can go there to practise the recorder. They have libraries with internal break out areas that almost have a home office feel to it. Working from home is so common these days that a communal area with Wi-Fi means you can go down there and stay.
“It’s finding ways to extend what you find in a standard home and how you can adapt these spaces to your needs.”
While looking through the apartment or the floorplan is critical, Angus says it is these communal areas that will make a difference to your lifestyle because of their ability to draw you outside your home.
Do as I do
Angus decided to practise what he preached a few years ago and moved from a house to a city apartment.
“It’s made me more conscious of things like storage — moving gave me the ability to declutter a lot of my life. You think you need this stuff but it was a beautiful adaptation.
“I love the connectivity with everything at my fingertips. I can sit downstairs and catch up with the neighbours — and their dogs.
“How do we capture all these things we love about freestanding homes and bring them into this environment? By doing things like making balconies larger with stacking doors so the spaces have a nice flow. I use a lot more of the available space now and when I am creating spaces I know they will be used.”
North-facing living areas with generous balconies make apartment living attractive.
Prime at Macquarie Park has city views.
Apartment living offers outdoor areas to enjoy without the hassle of maintaining them yourself.
The second stage of Ramsgate Park has just been released, with a strong emphasis on communal green space for residents.