The greatest appeal of condo living may be being part of a community of neighbours. An important part of this is socializing in the common areas.
The irony is that it doesn’t take long to realize that building a community is difficult. Despite the ease of condo living, most condo residents choose not to participate.
Common areas do not bring residents out of their suite. Having appealing and attractive spaces, and activities of interest, is what appeals to condo residents.
At one time “amenities” referred to features such as storage space and laundry rooms. There may have been separate rooms with closed doors to facilitate meetings. Today it is about recreational and social activities, elimination of doors and creation of open spaces.
Many condo corporations offer what can be described as a clubhouse environment. The most popular amenity tends to be an exercise room combining quality cardio equipment and exercise classes. Other clubhouse features include space for large and small groups to gather.
A Party Room may offer space to accommodate larger groups. A Multipurpose Room may offer space to facilitate multiple groups concurrently using the space.
People tend to congregate where others are seen to gather. An effective open space may host people watching a sporting event, children sitting with parents reading and teens doing homework or playing on their computer. Popular multi-use spaces are likely to include some combination of a lounge, dining area, TV, tables for working or eating, kitchen and multiple seating areas.
Nice furniture, plenty of seating and kitchen space is a prerequisite for hosting private or community events.
Regular programming remains one of the best ways to entice residents out of their suites and encouraging interaction. Programming options include a cooking demonstration, wine tasting, topical speakers, entertainers such as comedians, book readings and/or lectures on health and legal topics. Programming should cater to community interests and the skills available within the community. Some events may be free of charge while others charge a fee.