Business executives on solo assignments are a key segment of the serviced apartment market, but people forget their needs are just one part of the sector's overall picture.
Such a stereotype overlooks the fact that many residents are in town for multiyear stays, with growing families and a need for the extra space and creature comforts that make it possible to create a real sense of home.
Certain apartment providers make a point of offering larger two- and three-bedroom units - plus luxury penthouses - in configurations suited to work and domestic requirements.
'Our apartment sizes are very generous and attract executives, many with families, who appreciate the spaciousness and the flexibility of layouts for various housing budgets,' says Rene Holenweger, general manager of Gateway Apartments in Tsim Sha Tsui.
He notes that the development's two-bedroom units have more than 1,600 sq ft of living space, while three-bedroom options offer more than 2,200 sq ft. It is easy to adapt space for use as a study, home office, TV room or children's play area - and to change things as priorities alter.
'Small touches offered on a complimentary basis add to the feeling of comfort and convenience,' Holenweger says. 'These include purpose-designed children's furniture and special amenities for babies, which we will provide as and when needed.'
Finding the balance between creating a home and supporting work requirements is an important facet of the service at Pacific Place Apartments in Admiralty, where choices range from 1,220 sqft, one-bedroom units to 2,650 sqft, three-bedroom suites in contemporary or oriental designs. 'The majority of our residents are long-standing clients who prefer a homely and spacious environment where they can relax,' says Jenny Cheung, marketing manager (residential) for Swire Properties. 'But all the suites are also equipped with communications support and complimentary Wi-fi to cope with ever-changing needs.'
Benedict Chow, general manager of Harbour Grand Hong Kong in North Point, caters to families with suites from 635 sq ft to 1,075 sq ft with two bedrooms. Each comes with its own fully equipped kitchenette and a view across Victoria Harbour.
Guests regularly mention the view - along with spacious layouts, good service and the convenient access to the MTR - as one of the main reasons for choosing these luxury apartments.
'Depending on guests' needs, we can make various modifications, for example allowing them to move in their own furniture to feel more at home,' Chow says. 'Also, we do everything possible to help guests who come to Hong Kong to establish their own company. Often, they start by using their apartment as a home office, so we help them customise the space.'