Coliving Cocktail #29

Hi all,

Welcome to another cocktail, infused with the latest coliving news, projects, knowledge and announcements 🔥


These are my six main picks from everything that is happening:

Coliving is still controversial, at least in Ireland.

Public dismissal of the 111-bed shared co-living development in Ballsbridge by Bartra Capital is riding on a wave of public discontentment, as we've seen last year with people going on the streets against coliving developments. How will city authorities react? My hypothesis: this is a phase that will end with the approval of more qualitative projects, yet controversy will never end (and in fact, is just starting).

Developments are popping up everywhere.

Whether a 3,000 bed project in Manchester by Vita Group and Downing, a 400-unit space in Dublin by Stoneweg, the launch of the 3,000 bed startup COVIE in India (not located in one building) or a 210-bedroom project somewhere in the UK by Bartra, the question now is: when is it coliving and when is it not? Would a shared gym and rooftop be sufficient to call a 3,000-bed project "coliving"? Or is there a limit in terms of maximum amount of people who share fundamental amenities such as kitchen and living room? It's easy to ride the coliving wave when a product actually resembles a high-end serviced apartment model.

PS: I'm current working with Co-Liv on a coliving accreditation system and would love your thoughts on where the boundary lies! Just respond to this email.

Coliving post-covid, rise or downfall?

In our latest Coliving Insights edition, we made it clear that coliving is here to stay - and to adapt. Now, some press is picking up the subject. I have zero fear that the coliving demand and supply will drop. Witnessing the amount of posts on Facebook from individuals who want to live in community, seeing the amount of housing innovation in rapidly urbanized countries, reading about acclaimed mixed use housing architecture and hearing about the continuous approval of new developments, the question rather is whether coliving spaces will turn towards more "micro-units" instead of bringing innovation within the shared living architecture.

Will coliving go mainstream?

In an article by my friend Lachlan Sloan, one sentence summed it up: "I think that only a very small percentage of the actual residential accommodation market will be coliving. This is (...) simply because the residential market is so huge that even a small percentage of it is considered large." The real challenge will not be penetrating the market, but differentiating yourself within it. And if you ask yourself how - read about the future of coliving in our Coliving 3.0 concept.

My favorite read:

a lot of articles have been talking about how the future of living will the integration of home, community and work in one place. Which is fine - but it often only scratches the real estate surfaces. Ryan Fix wrote the most beautiful piece on that subject I've read so far - enjoy the read.

Get involved in the Coliving Industry Survey:

initiated with Co-Liv, the goal is to better understand the needs of coliving professionals. The results will only be used internally (and it's anonymous) to create more initiatives that serve you -whether masterminds, events, lobbying, content, etc. You can still participate until the end of this week - click here to do so!



How do you create engagement in coliving spaces?

On this third episode of the Art of Coliving podcast, Kalen Hayman and I discuss the approach of creating engaged residents, among others

- how to capitalize on the resources of your residents
- how to incentivize residents to be proactive
- and how to play upon the network effect

Community is NOT created by itself. It can be - but instead of leaving it to luck, better implement the right approaches that will increase the chance for community to be formed.

👉 Watch the episode

PS: Missed episode #2 discussing the onboarding process? Watch it here.


It's official: we are launching the Coliving Awards.

When I first met Bart Sasim from Spatial Experience in 2019, who became my cofounder of Coliving Insights, we connected on that subject. I told him that it was in my mind (I wrote about it a year ago under the name "Coliving Challenge") when he said:

"Me too, and in fact, I got the domains already." He was faster!

One year later, it's happening - we're creating the Coliving Awards by Coliving Insights in partnership with Co-Liv and other major industry organizations. The ceremony will be held in 2021 with applications starting soon on ten different verticals (best operator, most innovative architecture, etc).

Find out more about the Coliving Awards, how to get involved and how to participate.

👉 Discover Coliving Awards


I've been blessed that Europe opened up again, which allowed me to visit family and spending quality time with key friends (and business partners - there is no difference to me).

Currently, I'm in Ericeira (north of Lisbon) on my "love retreat" - every year, three core friends and I disappear from the big city world to spend time together, bond and connect. And this year, it's combined with my first wave of surfing that lasted more than 2 seconds!

Over the next weeks, I'll be in Paris for the opening of my friend's coworking & coliving, head over to Amsterdam for a team retreat with my amazing co founders from Coliving Insights, and finish the chapter in Berlin to explore further partnerships.

One key theme in my life is self-sufficiency: emotional, physical, financial. A lot of people tend to have an external lotus of control, meaning putting the responsibility for what happens to them or how they feel on external factors (especially on other people).

The reason why I can't stay longer than a few weeks in Paris is that the general culture is one of complaint - which is fine, as long as you take action and don't take things personally. But that, is often not happening.

Carpe diem,


PS: If you have any thoughts on what you just read or on the podcast, please share them with me. And if someone forwarded you this email, you can subscribe to my newsletter here.

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