Student luxury meets rising demand

 In Trends

Luxury student housing is a new experiment in communal living, and investors are cashing in on a growing trend.

Collegiate Marquês de Pombal, the country’s first luxury student accommodation, opened in January on Lisbon’s Conde Redondo street and is not your typical student house. Resembling a five-star hotel more than your usual student dorms, prices start at €142 a week for an apartment with two rooms. Students can also pay €388 a week for a large penthouse with a terrace.

The residence has an on-site cinema, a swimming pool and a private fitness suite. This former Post Office building, totalling 11,000m2, was completely renovated and can house up to 330 occupants. Other amenities include 24/7 concierge, private dinner party rooms, secure bicycle storage, and a library.

Collegiate Marquês de Pombal’s décor is inspired by the Portuguese capital, with a touch of blue in the bedrooms resembling the blue and white tiles that cover many of the city’s buildings. The communal areas have a more industrial feel, inspired by LX Factory, a former manufacturing complex turned into a fashion, arts and creative “island” in the neighbourhood of Alcântara. A warm atmosphere is achieved through metal tones like copper and brass, soft furnishings, rugs and foliage.

There is also a Skylight lounge, filled with natural light and a large amount of flora for a natural feel, with olive trees and flowerbeds sited between furniture.

Living area at Collegiate Marques de Pombal

The façade of the building, refurbished by Portuguese architects José Quintela da Fonseca and Bernardo Durão, is covered in a visual feast created by one of Europe’s leading street artists, Mr.Dheo, to pay tribute to the city’s dynamic urban arts scene.

Luxury student accommodation provider Collegiate AC also has sites in other cities, including Liverpool, Madrid, Valencia and Derby.

“We have general standards, but they are adapted in style to cater to the local environment,” Collegiate AC CEO, Heriberto Cuanalo, explains.

The total investment for this student accommodation residence in Lisbon was €13 million.

“We chose Lisbon because it is one of the most cosmopolitan centres in Europe,” Cuanalo points out.

“Portugal is an important country for us, and we very much like the culture, the people are friendly and it is a safe country. There was the opportunity to develop the building centrally, in line with our brand standards.”

Pool and Gymn area at Collegiate Marquês de Pombal

Collegiate Marquês de Pombal was developed by Temprano Capital Partners, a European group based in Barcelona, which last year announced its plans to offer 1,500 studio apartments for students in Lisbon, Porto and Coimbra.

Temprano revealed it planned to invest between €80 million and €100 million in Portugal and has already acquired a plot of land on Rua Sousa Lopes in Entrecampos, where it will build another residence for 370 students, expected to be completed by 2019. “Our objective is to be a market leader across Iberia in the next 18 months,” notes the CEO.

“This is an area of the market which has not been developed and which we know students want.”