Nobu is latest luxury hospitality brand to add residences to its portfolio

Nobu is latest luxury hospitality brand to add residences to its portfolio

Luxury brands have been diversifying their revenue streams for years now. Rather than focusing on one thing – say, fashion – they are expanding into other sectors. This isn’t a case of Jack of all trades and master of none, though. Instead, it’s about the brand being king, creating a universe around that one central promise to the customer. You don’t need to just buy the Bulgari handbag: you can also stay at its hotel and eat at its restaurant.

Synonymous with sushi and celebrities, Nobu is known around the world for its glamorous restaurants, which now total more than 40 since the original branch opened in Tribeca, New York, in 1997. The Malibu venue in particular is an A-list haven: from the Kardashians filming scenes for their reality shows over nigiri to Leonardo DiCaprio feeding his new girlfriend sashimi, or Angelina Jolie doing family dinner with all six of her children.

And it’s not just the A-list that love it. The aspirational classes do, too, and securing a table here is the ultimate status symbol. Case in point: during the pandemic, it was so difficult to get a table that teenagers on TikTok started posting videos of themselves calling up and pretending to be Kendall Jenner to get a reservation. So many did it, that Kendall and Nobu had to set up a secret password.

atlantis the royal grand reveal weekend 2023 new nobu opening
Kendall Jenner at the opening of Nobu Dubai in January 2023Kevin Mazur - Getty Images

Capitalising on its star appeal, Nobu opened its first hotel at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas in 2013, with further outposts following suit in the likes of Manila, Miami, Ibiza, Palo Alto and London. Instantly recognisable as ‘brand Nobu’, they all boast the same Japanese-inflected minimalist chic aesthetic, with clean lines, light wood and modern furnishings.

And if you want to pledge allegiance at the altar of Nobu even further, then you no longer need to limit yourself to dinner or a hotel stay. Now, you can live the Nobu lifestyle 24/7, thanks to the opening of its first luxury residences in Abu Dhabi. Located at Mamsha Al Saadiyat, Saadiyat Island, the 88 first-of-their-kind one-, two- and three-bedroom homes have all been created with Nobu’s design signatures front of mind, with Chef Nobu even curating the kitchen.

nobu residences
Nobu Residences

Also on site will be a swimming pool overlooking the Guggenheim (designed by Frank Gehry), a state-of-the-art gym, outdoor yoga studio, steam room and sauna. Another major perk is that residents can nip over to the neighbouring Nobu Hotel and use its facilities too, including booking Nobu chefs for private dinners.

“The Nobu Residences Abu Dhabi will embody the pinnacle of a new era in luxurious lifestyle living,” explains Trevor Horwell, CEO of Nobu Hospitality. “As we embark on this remarkable journey, introducing these residences to Abu Dhabi, we are not merely constructing homes; we are crafting a lifestyle masterpiece, the Nobu way. This initiative underscores our dedication to seamlessly blend the essence of Nobu Hospitality with the vibrant tapestry of Abu Dhabi’s cultural landscape.”

Prices are high but demand is higher: a three-bed Nobu Residences penthouse recently went for a record-breaking $37.3 million (about £30 million), making it the most expensive apartment ever sold in Abu Dhabi. It also set a new benchmark for price per square metre in the Emirates, reaching more than $26,000 (about £20,500).

nobu residences
This three-bed Nobu Residences penthouse became the most-expensive apartment ever sold in Abu DhabiNobu Residences

Evidently, branded luxury residences have become big business in the past decade, from the Four Seasons to the Mandarin Oriental. Aldar Development, the real-estate company behind the Nobu Residences, is also set to launch The Louvre Residences in Abu Dhabi in 2025, which has become something of a cultural centre in recent years thanks to the arrival of not just The Louvre gallery, but also the aforementioned Guggenheim and the Natural History Museum. The Louvre Residences are also the first of its kind for the Parisian gallery brand, featuring the same perks, like a residents-only theatre, children’s playroom and wellness centre – plus incredible artwork everywhere, naturally.

“Louvre Abu Dhabi Residences at Saadiyat Grove is our response to the demand for a premium residence that echoes the values, quality, and timelessness of the cultural powerhouse that is Abu Dhabi,” explains Jonathan Emery, CEO of Aldar Development. “[Louvre Abu Dhabi Residences] represent the pinnacle of art, culture, and design, tailored and delivered for the ever-discerning homeowner. Through our partnership with Louvre Abu Dhabi, we will build and deliver the ultimate lifestyle and product to match the world-famous institution and architectural masterpiece.”

As the Eagles sang in Hotel California, “you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave”. If you were living in one of these residences, you probably wouldn’t want to anyway…

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