A YEAR of discovery
In the greater scheme of things, November 12 may be remembered as the date in 1980 when Nasa spacecraft Voyager 1 took the first images of Saturn's rings, perhaps the most beautiful sight in our solar system.
But, in more earthly matters, it was also the date when LuxeHomes began its journey of providing a sharper picture about the cream of Hong Kong real estate. It is a good time to take stock.
Firstly, we have moved beyond just the bi-weekly magazine. In May, we produced a 174-page LuxeHomes Annual Edition, which analysed luxury districts based on a breakthrough classification of 'traditional, contemporary and hip'. We also launched a website with a search engine for luxury homes in September.
We have consistently provided news analysis that helps readers see through the avalanche of property information peppered across the media, with insights that later proved to be foresights.
For example, we have kept a close eye on internal and external factors that affect mortgage rates with articles covering subjects ranging from the minutes of the US Federal Reserve meetings to the attitudes of local banks. Many of our warnings would have helped readers prepare as mortgage rates crept up.
'I am often attracted by the impressive covers of LuxeHomes and the nice properties inside. I think the content is very good,' says reader Michelle Chan, who lives in Kowloon Tong.
In the LuxeHomes Annual Edition, we argued about the huge potential of East Kowloon with a chapter titled 'Birth of a Metropolis' at a time when the area was hardly the talk of town. The government's policy address last month announced plans to turn East Kowloon into the new business centre of Hong Kong.
'I think LuxeHomes' content is very comprehensive. I particularly like the stories with forward-looking angles,' says Louis Ho, a director of Centaline's Stately Homes.
Green living and interior design are favourite subjects. 'LuxeHomes, which is equally appreciated by readers and the interior sector, is a comprehensive and thoughtful publication with a wide scope of coverage across both interiors and home furnishing,' says Kate Babington, managing director of eco-furniture company TREE.
In addition to creative marketing campaigns to reach out to readers, we have also expanded the distribution network. Many high-end supermarkets now stock free copies, including City'super, Great, ParknShop.
'LuxeHomes is a professional publication with strong editorial and design edges. It commands a high-end readership profile that makes it useful for us in communicating key property development news to our target audiences,' says Semy Ng, Kerry Real Estate Agency's general manager of marketing.
We are planning to improve the magazine with more direct input from leading players in property and design. We will also feature more regular articles on interior design and home furnishing.
As for special reports, we will feature subjects ranging from stylish international property to the most prestigious cars.