I am learning something new everyday from the millennials I am delighted to have in my life. Having said that, I am pretty certain they are sometimes saying the same thing as me – it has just been packaged up with new language to make it sound cool….. or is it rad?
In any event, I found myself yet again discussing design and development with those much younger than me and we were talking about where they liked to hang out with friends and why.
What I learnt was that they choose to catch up with friends, have drinks, dinner or coffee in places they identify with. Places they feel are relevant to them and where they feel comfortable. They also want it to be an experience – and that experience encompasses everything from the décor, to the surrounding area, the vibe, the food and the management of such venues.
As a developer I take stock in what our younger generations are saying. And while I may not agree with everything they say, to ignore this generation, who are tech savvy and earning good incomes would be foolish.
In a bid to understand millennials and their motivation to purchase, big brands have invested heavily in market research to provide them with insights into understanding this demographic better. In fact, it is said that they are probably one of the most studied generations to date, which is not surprising when you consider the rate at which technology has changed our lives and the ease in which they adapted to it.
However, it’s not just millennials who want to find their tribe.Increasingly, other generations have followed suit as we also seek shared experiences.Perhaps it is the influence the millennials have on us that have forced us to adopt technology and change our beliefs over time.
And I can see the changes within my own developments. Baby Boomers are downsizing, and three bathrooms are not always seen as an advantage as it means more time cleaning and less time enjoying weekends outside of a home.In many cases they would rather have more living space than an extra bathroom. Naturally they want a beautifully designed space but are happy for that space to be an integration of indoor and outdoor living that is facilitated by large expanses of glass doors that slide to allow a multi-functional area to be enlarged when family or friends visit.
What I do find interesting is that garage storage is important to Baby Boomers and its not just for their cars. With many retired or having children off their hands there is more time for other healthy outside pursuits and their storage needs are generally for golf clubs, motorbikes and push bikes.
And probably the most important factor is that they want to be close to funky cafes, bars and restaurants where they can spend time with other like-minded tribe members.
Thankfully, the Sunshine Coast is now evolving quickly, and savvy retailers and restaurateurs are delivering some outstanding venues and bars.You only have to visit the Wharf at Mooloolaba, to see the new lease on life this space has been given.Again, attracting a wide array of demographics, but where tribes come to meet, catch up and play.
In fact, Mooloolaba continues to evolve to meet the needs of the varying tastes and preferences of different demographics.The side streets, back lanes and arcades are undergoing a revitalisation like never before and each of the newly created venues is about creating an experience – one that has longevity and is enduring – but one that will adapt and evolve like the people whose patronage they rely on.
So, next time you venture out, take note of where you like to go and why – in fact why don’t you drop by my two latest ventures, “Backlane” and “Cellar Door” which are located on First Avenue, Mooloolaba - you may just be surprised that the vibe has truly attracted the tribe!