Producing ‘luxury’ housing: Developers’ strategies and housing advertisements in Hong Kong (1961–2011)

Wing Yee Kimburley CHOI*, Annie HN CHAN, Anita KW CHAN

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)

Abstract

Building on insights from critical luxury studies, this paper examines how developers produce ‘luxury’ in Hong Kong’s high-priced housing by using textual analysis on a sample of newspaper advertisements for private housing from 1961 to 2011. Findings show how advertisers and developers actively injected new elements of luxury to maximise profits. We argue that Hong Kong’s property oligarchy has successfully created luxury housing in previously unremarkable locations by producing various exclusivist aspirations, thus promoting excess and reinforcing housing and socio-spatial inequalities. Our discussion deepens understanding of Hong Kong’s housing hierarchy by looking beyond location-based exclusivity and contributes to critical luxury studies by underscoring the strategies of property conglomerates in the production of luxury housing.

本文以奢侈品批判研究为基础,嘗試对 1961 年至 2011 年间刊登在报纸上的私人住宅广告作抽样调查和文本分析,檢視发展商如何在香港的高价住房市场制造出“奢侈品” —豪宅。 研究结果清楚显示广告商和发展商积极地注入新的奢侈元素以賺取更大的利潤。我们认为,香港的房地产不單寡头垄断,又通过编造各种私家独享愿景,成功地在原本的普通地段打造出豪宅社区,促成了消费主义中的过剩文化,并强化了住房和社会空间的不平等现象。我们的讨论跳出房地产思维里地段决定论的局限,深化了对香港住房等级体系的理解;又通过分析房地产集团在豪宅生产方面的各种營銷策略,为奢侈品批判研究添砖加瓦。
Original languageEnglish
Article number004209801989671
JournalUrban Studies
Early online date12 Feb 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Feb 2020

Bibliographical note

Acknowledgements
We would like to thank the three anonymous reviewers and the Managing Editor of Urban Studies, Professor Phil Hubbard, for their helpful and supportive feedback.

Funding
The work described in this paper was fully supported by a grant from the Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (CityU 11616216).

Keywords

  • housing inequality
  • housing advertisements
  • luxury policy
  • property conglomerates
  • 住房 不平等
  • 住房广告
  • 豪宅
  • 房地产 政策
  • 房地产集团
  • luxury housing
  • housing policy

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