Last word
Paul Scialla

US real estate developer Delos has created the first set of building standards based on health and wellbeing. Katie Barnes talks to founder Paul Scialla about pioneering a whole new way of building

By Katie Barnes | Published in Leisure Management 2014 issue 2


In late November 2013, actor Leonardo DiCaprio invested in Delos, the US real estate company that has created the first building rating system focused not just on the environment but also on human health and wellness. DiCaprio also became an advisor to the board.

The company combines medical research and architectural and engineering advancements in living environments, and has created homes in Greenwich Village, New York, featuring more than 500 wellness features.

As well as the homes in New York, Delos has completed a number of other projects, including a Stay Well®room at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, and has several more in the pipeline. Here founder Paul Scialla explains the concept.

How was the idea for Delos born?
Around five years ago, I started getting interested in this notion of sustainability and real estate. Lots of great things had gone on in green building and I wondered if we could push the envelope so the focus wasn’t only on environmental sustainability, but also on human or biological sustainability.

The fact is we spend 92 per cent of our time indoors, so if we can introduce preventative medical intentions into the very spaces that we’re spending our time in, it’s a huge win.

How did you persuade so many leading architects, designers, doctors and scientists to get on board?

Luckily the story sells itself. Everyone we speak to wants to get involved – this is an obvious way to finally deliver preventative medicine in a passive way to people on a daily basis.

We wanted to offer an evidence-based approach. With half of these things you can touch or feel them, but the other half are working on your body without you necessarily realising it.

You converted your own home to trial the concept. What benefits did you see?
Since completing the renovation, my energy levels are through the roof, I’ve rarely been sick and my sleeping patterns have never been better.

Are Delos developments just for celebrities and the high end market?
Everyone cares about their own health. We carried out extensive demographic studies early on to assess our target categories, demand and potential premiums. We found that what we were offering appealed, and had significant value, to every single person regardless of gender, age or income level.

The apartments cost US$4,000 per square foot. Do you think that is expensive?
It's not expensive based on current New York City real estate prices. Plus, when you think about having a home that’s working on your body 24 hours a day, we think it’s worth the price.

Why are you so confident Delos will be a success?
Real estate is the largest asset class in the world – it’s worth US$150 trillion [E111tn, £91tn] – and we’re looking to combine that with one of the fastest growing and, arguably, one of the most important industries in the world: health and wellness.

More than US$2 trillion [E1.5tn, £1.2tn] a year is spent on preventative medical intervention, so, for Delos, there’s a massive economic play.

This interviewed first appeared in Spa Business, Issue 1, 2014


The Well Building Standard™
The Well Building Standard™ is a framework based on seven design categories such as good quality air, water and light. These impact on 12 domains of health, ranging from immune and sleep health to emotional and cognitive function. The standards are designed to sit in line with existing green building certifications and can be applied to homes, offices, public buildings and hotels.
Paul Scialla
 


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Leisure Management
2014 issue 2

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Leisure Management - Paul Scialla

Last word

Paul Scialla


US real estate developer Delos has created the first set of building standards based on health and wellbeing. Katie Barnes talks to founder Paul Scialla about pioneering a whole new way of building

Katie Barnes, Spa Business
Paul Scialla
DiCaprio is said to have bought one of Delos' residences

In late November 2013, actor Leonardo DiCaprio invested in Delos, the US real estate company that has created the first building rating system focused not just on the environment but also on human health and wellness. DiCaprio also became an advisor to the board.

The company combines medical research and architectural and engineering advancements in living environments, and has created homes in Greenwich Village, New York, featuring more than 500 wellness features.

As well as the homes in New York, Delos has completed a number of other projects, including a Stay Well®room at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, and has several more in the pipeline. Here founder Paul Scialla explains the concept.

How was the idea for Delos born?
Around five years ago, I started getting interested in this notion of sustainability and real estate. Lots of great things had gone on in green building and I wondered if we could push the envelope so the focus wasn’t only on environmental sustainability, but also on human or biological sustainability.

The fact is we spend 92 per cent of our time indoors, so if we can introduce preventative medical intentions into the very spaces that we’re spending our time in, it’s a huge win.

How did you persuade so many leading architects, designers, doctors and scientists to get on board?

Luckily the story sells itself. Everyone we speak to wants to get involved – this is an obvious way to finally deliver preventative medicine in a passive way to people on a daily basis.

We wanted to offer an evidence-based approach. With half of these things you can touch or feel them, but the other half are working on your body without you necessarily realising it.

You converted your own home to trial the concept. What benefits did you see?
Since completing the renovation, my energy levels are through the roof, I’ve rarely been sick and my sleeping patterns have never been better.

Are Delos developments just for celebrities and the high end market?
Everyone cares about their own health. We carried out extensive demographic studies early on to assess our target categories, demand and potential premiums. We found that what we were offering appealed, and had significant value, to every single person regardless of gender, age or income level.

The apartments cost US$4,000 per square foot. Do you think that is expensive?
It's not expensive based on current New York City real estate prices. Plus, when you think about having a home that’s working on your body 24 hours a day, we think it’s worth the price.

Why are you so confident Delos will be a success?
Real estate is the largest asset class in the world – it’s worth US$150 trillion [E111tn, £91tn] – and we’re looking to combine that with one of the fastest growing and, arguably, one of the most important industries in the world: health and wellness.

More than US$2 trillion [E1.5tn, £1.2tn] a year is spent on preventative medical intervention, so, for Delos, there’s a massive economic play.

This interviewed first appeared in Spa Business, Issue 1, 2014


The Well Building Standard™
The Well Building Standard™ is a framework based on seven design categories such as good quality air, water and light. These impact on 12 domains of health, ranging from immune and sleep health to emotional and cognitive function. The standards are designed to sit in line with existing green building certifications and can be applied to homes, offices, public buildings and hotels.

Originally published in Leisure Management 2014 issue 2

Published by Leisure Media Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385 | Contact us | About us | © Cybertrek Ltd