Getting That Luxe Look

Luxury means something different to every client. One might find a steam oven and an eight-burner stove to be fancy, while another considers low-VOC cabinets and improved air ventilation to be lavish. Every client also wants some degree of luxury, even if their budget is small. KBB spoke with Jen Pinto, senior interior designer for San Diego-based Jackson Design and Remodeling, to find out her thoughts.

What defines the luxury client to you?
Pinto: “A luxury client is someone who knows what they want and knows which aspects of their lives need enhancement. Luxury clients are usually looking for more than just an aesthetic change – it’s more of a lifestyle change for them. They appreciate quality along with aesthetics, and they want their homes to not only be beautiful but to also work in a way that feels natural and effortless.” 

What types of products is this client looking for?
Pinto: “Luxury clients require exceptionally high quality and an element of uniqueness. They appreciate products that are built well to stand the test of time, and they want products in their homes with an aesthetic or function that feels exclusive and one-of-a-kind.”

How do you cater to luxury clients before, during and after the project?
Pinto: “Luxury clients, like all clients, appreciate the personal one-on-one attention they receive from the designers on our team. The intention is to make the whole process from beginning to end as easy as it can be and with as little stress as possible. As designers, we try to lay everything out in a very systematic way clients can understand and trust. We create visuals and offer a variety of options based on each client’s desires. We also oversee installations for our clients to make sure that work is executed with meticulous attention to detail.”

How can a designer with a lower budget still achieve a luxurious look?
Pinto: “Experiment with creating a focal point – a unique and special element that really catches your eye, expresses your style and makes your space feel special. A dramatic light fixture, an intricate tile pattern or a colorful accent wall are all creative ideas you can accomplish on a budget.”

How can a designer with a high-end budget use their funds well in a renovation?
Pinto: “A wise starting point is to focus on the quality of materials. You can feel the quality of hardware when you touch it, or the craftsmanship in cabinetry when you open a drawer. With appliances or fixtures, it’s important to invest in the best so you’re not called back to replace something in a couple of years.”

How has the pandemic affected luxury design?
Pinto: “Clients are being more mindful about what they splurge on. Now that they’ve been spending so much time at home, they’re realizing what bothers them about their surroundings, and they’re more willing to spend money on practical, functional elements that affect their daily lives. Most clients want to start with spaces they spend a lot of time in, like the kitchen, master bathroom or outdoor living area. They want to splurge more on spaces that will improve their lifestyle and make them more relaxed and at ease. If a kitchen isn’t functional and easy to cook in, that’s one space that doesn’t make a client feel good. Their intention is to make that space easy to spend time in with a design that is spacious and calm but also very functional.”

Where do you think luxury design is heading in the future?
Pinto: “Overall, I think more people are spending time at home. Luxury design is headed toward focusing on ease of use and individuality. High quality of materials and fixtures will continue to be important, but now true luxury will require more than that. Luxury design will focus on how spaces are being used and how those spaces can improve someone’s everyday lifestyle and express their personality. Luxury will be about self-care and nurturing and how to make spaces flow to the beat of your life.”

View the original article on the Kitchen & Bath Business Website