There has been a perception shift of what “luxury” means to millennials. It is marked by a move towards authentic, bespoke experiences away from the older model of aspirational, unattainable luxury.
The new norm is a world where perfectly manicured nails and immaculately coiffed hairdos in antiseptic environments is beginning to be viewed as passé.
Homegrown celebrity Allan Wu shares with us how Sky Premium, a by-invite only membership club attempts to cater to this growing market.
Their panel of lifestyle advisers have curated perks from exotic travel venues by Banyan Tree, fine restaurants such as Summer Pavilion and Yàn, yet not alienating casual eateries such as the Assembly Ground and The Social Space — all under girded by the similar pursuit of a quality experience.
Popspoken: What is your idea of a good life?
Allan Wu: My idea of a “Good Life” is a hassle free one – where I get to enjoy the finer things in life without the hassle of figuring out what’s worth it or where to find them.
Popspoken: Should luxury be exclusive or inclusive?
Allan Wu: I think it should be both. It should be inclusive, so that many can enjoy it yet each experience should be bespoke to the customer. We all have varying interests and interpretations of luxury and so it’s great to have an inclusive platform like Sky Premium where you not only get access to exclusive benefits and perks, but also industry masterclasses and parties.
Popspoken: How has the perception of luxury changed from 20 years ago?
Allan Wu: Luxury has always been perceived as elusive and for the wealthy but at Sky Premium, we want to change that perception by making luxury accessible yet retaining its exclusivity.
We have seen a slight shift in the perception of luxury with people having higher spending power and the democratisation of luxury, so much so that there has been an increase in demand for luxury experiences, like travel, wellness and artisanal goods.
We have a curated selection of items on our E-store that cost less than regular retailers, such as luxury bags, home & living products, unique wine from Napa Valley and gin that are not retailed in stores.
Popspoken: Share with us your most luxurious experience to date, and why it stays at the top of your mind
Allan Wu: My most recent trip to Maldives where I stay at the Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru — what an experience! Aside from the natural beauty of Maldives, it was made sweeter with the special benefits that we get discounts on the hotel rate as Sky Premium members.
What I have next in my bucket-list is to experience a cruise in the Caribbean with Oceania cruises or hit the slopes in New Zealand with The Ride Side, lucky for me, these are Sky Premium’s partners, so in due time.
Popspoken: Is there a reason why certain brands like Guava Pass, which are known to be more ‘mass market’ were chosen?
Allan Wu: There are many interpretation to luxury and to some, access to a plethora of fitness and wellness programmes are a luxury. Also the combination of prices if one was to go for all those classes on their own would indeed be expensive.
Also for me, wellness and fitness are very close to my heart and in curating the experiences for Sky Premium members I wanted to ensure members would also get access to a healthier life.
Popspoken: How did the panel pick the brands and decide which is a good fit for Sky Premium or not?
Allan Wu: Sky Premium boasts a robust portfolio of over 200 carefully selected merchants across travel, dining, shopping and wellness, which offer undisputed, unique and top-notch experiences catered to the discerning.
Sky Premium’s merchants are carefully curated through a stringent and comprehensive process that considers industry ranking and public sentiment. This guarantees that only high-quality, first-class brands are offered to our members.
Popspoken: Could you describe some curated events of what Sky Premium members can expect?
Allan Wu: Sky Premium manufactures closed-door and exclusives events for all members, strictly on a by-invite-only basis.
These include masterclasses (e.g. an organic kimchi-making workshop by gourmet grocers, first hand exclusive beauty and fashion products viewing with special discounts), prestigious members’ parties such as cruise-ship soirees, fashion shows and special experience events such as the Yokohama Sparkling Twilight where we charter a cruise to watch the fireworks in Yokohama, Japan.
Of course parties like the Michelin Guide Singapore 2019 gala, launch event held at National Gallery in 2018, as well as the 5th Anniversary event in Tokyo.