Renters Want a Great Room

By Erika Schnitzer, Associate EditorResidents “don’t want to get lost in their apartments. They want to be connected with their neighbors, they want a place to meet people,” says Lesa LaRocca, president of Trillium Residential. And that’s exactly what Trillium offers. Trillium Residential’s boutique hotel-inspired Great Rooms offer a place for residents to relax and to connect. “It’s a place that welcomes renters to really utilize it as an extension of their living room,” says LaRocca. Trillium’s Arizona communities are built according to research showing their renters’—mostly Generation X and Y—hot buttons, LaRocca explains. Additionally, because many of Trillium’s properties are built in close proximity to major businesses and easy freeway access, the company boasts strong corporate housing and preferred employee programs for short- and long-term stays, respectively.Though each community is outfitted with different amenities depending on the target market, Trillium’s most popular features include the demonstration kitchen, the Trillium Cinema—which features a 132-in. screen, a 200-DVD library and surround sound, and it can also be used as a 40-seat Powerpoint presentation room—and the Electronic Lounge, complete with bean bag chairs, flat-screen TVs, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii. All of Trillium’s Great Rooms are staffed with “lifestyle specialists,” who not only assist residents with concierge needs but also ensure they utilize and enjoy the amenities offered at each community. “When you walk into a Trillium Great Room, you are immediately engaged. Lifestyle specialists are there to create this connection, to welcome anyone who walks in the room,” LaRocca explains. “That welcoming partner has really helped these Great Rooms become the hub of our community.” Furthering the notion of connectivity, Trillium also offers TOM (Trillium on the Move), an activities van that shuttles residents to the neighborhood for bimonthly events.Standard design features that have been repeated throughout Trillium communities’ Great Rooms include sliding floor-to-ceiling windows, which, LaRocca points out, is “a nice way to have a seamless environment, whether you’re outside on the patio or inside—there’s that connectivity” and graphics that show new or prospective renters what life at a Trillium community is like. For example, at Trillium Pinnacle Peak, one wall in the spinning room depicts cyclists in motion; another displays billiard balls in the background of a game room.    Though LaRocca notes positive feedback for Trillium’s Great Rooms, she adds that the company is constantly looking to enhance its amenity package in future projects. Thus, residents are surveyed on what amenities they use and what changes they think should be made. “Resident feedback is crucial,” she says. “This community is for them. The electronic survey is great to keep our finger on the pulse of current and future residents.”Click here for a slideshow of images from Trillium’s Great Rooms.