With his passion for pioneering ideas and new approaches to interior design, Roberto Aybar-Imbert’s responsibilities as OBM International’s Senior Designer include planning, design, and strategic thinking for projects ranging from boutique properties, luxury hospitality brands, to mixed-use developments. And that makes him uniquely qualified to predict where lux home design is headed in 2018 in addition to being the first of our new “Guest Blogger” series. And since I’m always looking for expert insights like Roberto shares here, please shoot me an email (bspringer@oceanhomemag.com) to share feedback on this story or if you’d be interested in becoming an Ocean Home guest blogger in the future.—Bill Springer, Editor


1. Spectacular Views Still Reign Supreme

Humans love the water. Therefore, it is no surprise we love coastal living. Homes and retreats blessed with spectacular water views allow us to escape our daily lives and find peace and harmony in nature. Having an amazing waterfront site is just the begging of the home with spectacular lust-worthy views, the placement on the site, awareness and accommodate for sun and shade patterns, and in-home design allows for that view to be showcased and perfectly framed. The obsession with killer ocean views is worldwide and is one of the first things homeowners look form this trend is here to stay.

2. Smart Home Automation

Smart home technology is gaining momentum with luxury homeowners, unleashing the techie in all of us, seeking an easier way to live our busy daily lives. From a fully integrated smart home system to various smart home gadgets, the industry is rapidly evolving into a multi-million-dollar hub of creative concepts, helping homes become more comfortable by automation, using the latest technology. For example, integrated security systems can now be controlled from the palm of your hand whether at home or the office. 


3. Indoor-Outdoor Living Merge

In a time when professionals are spending more and more hours indoors, it’s no surprise the trend of extending indoor spaces into the outdoors has reached an all-time high. Designers are being asked to maximize space that is used outdoors in all seasons, from alfresco cooking and dining to lounging in front of luxurious private fireplaces, to sharing cool evenings in private spas, pools and outdoor showers, luxury living spaces now extend outside. From a designer’s perspective, it is important to plan for these spaces early in design stages to ensure that they can share the same language of the primary residence and can harmoniously bring together the best of both worlds.


4. Fire & Water: Resort-Style Pools & Landscaping

Speaking of outdoor living, no luxury residence would be complete without a luxury and lavish, resort-style swimming pool. Infinity edges dipping into the ocean are just the beginning, private pools now boast elaborate waterfalls offset with fire accoutrements, endless relaxation fountains, well-stocked swim-up bars and tile mosaics that would make Monet jealous.


5. In-Home Spa Therapy

Spa treatments are becoming essentials for a healthy lifestyle, gradually becoming a necessity instead of a superfluous luxury. Homeowners are incorporating massage rooms, elaborate heated loungers, dry saunas, steam rooms, and deep soaking jet tubs into their tropical abodes to create the perfect personal retreat.


6. Wine Cellars & Art Galleries

Personal wine cellars are as much a source of pride for what is inside as what the design is. Today’s wine cellars are works of art in their own right. From extravagant detailing, chiseled marble walls and glass flooring, every luxury home seems to demand a wine cellar designed to not only showcase their liquid assets by seamlessly blend into their surroundings through materials, décor, and visual openness. Along with private cellars, art galleries that house extensive private collections are integrated into the fabric of luxury residences around the world as private collections continue to grow. And together, they form a formidable duo.


7. Exercise Rooms, Yoga Studios & Private Gyms

Too busy to go to the gym? Think again, modern home gyms will make you want to hit the gym with first class design and equipment. Now commonplace in luxury homes, dedicated spaces for fitness needs to be equipped with high-end equipment, yoga and massage studios will continue to be a source of inspiration for the discerning homebuyer. Some homeowners are even completing their lavish fitness amenities with oxygen therapy rooms.


Image Credits: Photos by OBM International.