Here’s the story of a wellness coliving brand on a mission to empower society to live a more connected, purposeful, and fulfilling life.
Story of a brand, with two people and a purpose behind it
The story starts with Silvia and Williams, both born and raised in cultures rooted in vibrant community life, and their dream to empower society to live well through home design and shared living.
Their background and early experiences shaped their belief that a life well lived starts at home, and the secret sauce is the people that surround you. It is by connecting with something larger than ourselves – a community – that we achieve our best life.
On moving to the UK, they faced the harsh reality of the rental market. At the time, 1 in 3 rented homes was unfit for human habitation. Hidden costs, absent landlords, inflexible contracts, and poorly maintained spaces were all part of a self-servient culture of disregard for the health, wellbeing, and convenience of tenants. Homes and rental spaces reinforced lifestyles that made residents sick, stressed, disconnected, and unhappy.
The higher purpose – more connected, healthy society
Driven by their background and its sad contrast to the reality, the couple saw an opportunity to impact society through the rental market. After all, we spend more than 80% of our lifetime in the built environment. The quality of the places we choose to live, work, and spend time have a profound impact on our mood, happiness and mental health. It’s only logical that living well must start at home.
Seeing it as an opportunity and privilege to positively impact human wellbeing through shaping the built environment, they went on a mission to depart from the traditional landlord mindset to contribute to a more connected, and healthier society. As a result, they’ve been proactively investing in, designing, and building nourishing shared living environments that foster connection and elevate the lifestyle and wellness of a growing generation of renters, as well as helping others do the same. They’ve become part of the new wellness coliving movement.
Biophilic design, community building and strong focus on ethics and empowering wellness have emerged as the core brand values of B-Hive Living.
These values and ethos particularly align with the current post-pandemic cultural shift towards a healthier and more fulfilling way of living. Months of isolation, and the constant reminder of the fragility of life has made millions seek to depart from the burnout corporate culture and endemic loneliness. As a result, one in four people in the UK suffer from diagnosable mental health issues. Depression has become the primary cause of disability and ill-health worldwide. B-Hive Living has evolved to see property as an active contributor to supporting life and wellbeing rather than the primary value in itself.
“We shape our buildings and afterwards the buildings shape us.”Winston Churchill
Changing the experience of shared living renters
The solution to changing the experience of shared living renters is building Hives that are more than just a shared home. Built with a purpose, with a blend of biophilic design, fit-for-purpose technology, and social programme, they provide healthy spaces with everything you need for a fun, loving, and productive lifestyle. While remaining an affordable housing choice, they nurture quality sharing and the sense of belonging of those seeking to live well. The Hives host a vetted, like-minded, well-intentioned, and therefore safe community.
Biophilic and circular design is the main cornerstone of the Hives’ wellness-led interior design approach. From choosing a safe and green location with easy access to transport links and providing parking and bicycle storage space, to functional and flexible layout of the homes catering to multiple users and activities, B-Hive Living carefully considers every aspect of the design. The process is organic and collaborative, combining efforts of a multitude of local designers, artists and craftspeople.
The garden that comes with each Hive encourages exercise and contact with nature. It fosters community, wellbeing and creativity by including a fire pit, outdoor gym, hammocks, and other facilities to relax, dine, talk, socialise, read, and enjoy nature. Nature-inspired street art in the outdoor area provides for a unique vibe of the space, and a sense of detachment from everyday life.
Inside each house, you’ll find harmonious spaces with tactile materials, furniture, and colours creating the sense of ease, warmth and relaxation. The colour scheme echoes nature too. The yellow in the bedrooms enhances mood, with the use of grey in the right places for balance. The shared spaces feature colours and materials contributing to the sense of calmness and socialisation.
Every resident enjoys their own private bedroom, and large shared living, kitchen, and dining spaces. Those are built to be flooded with natural light through skylights and large windows. The abundance of plants also brings calm and stress reduction. Even the flooring is made to bring to mind nature and connection by harmoniously combining three types of wood.
The bright kitchens are made for sharing. They are convenient with multiple sets of cooking facilities, a large circulation space, and private cabinets for everyone.
The wellness coliving design of the homes also aims at minimising the environmental impact by using natural and reclaimed materials along with modern elements. In one of the Homes you will find a feature wall made of pellets from construction. The properties are decorated with repurposed skate and surf boards throughout. All tables and desks are built from recycled construction wood. Items like old whisky barrels and railway sleepers are used in the gardens. All furniture and flooring is lined with natural bee wax.
“The most successful interior design is that which most closely echoes the natural environment.”HRH Prince of Wales
Wellness is not only interior design. It’s also daily convenience and sense of control, ownership, and belonging over your immediate environment. It is scientifically proven to be linked to overall happiness. B-Hive Living offers it through apps and digital hubs for adjusting the lighting, music, and temperature remotely. A wireless sound system in the Hives brings even more comfort, sense of freedom, and familiarity – residents can access thousands of local radios of their home countries. Customised bedrooms, each with a smart tv with USB for personal streaming, have the same effect.
The comfortable, hassle-free living conditions empower a more socially rich and healthy lifestyle in the Hives. The residents have access to consultancy of a team of wellness experts. The monthly social events make bonding among residents and with the local community even easier. They include wellness-led experiences such as open-air fitness, culture expeditions , as well as bowling nights. The staff of B-Hive Living constantly works on providing content and technical support to empower residents to a more positive and harmonious lifestyle despite the pressures of life.
The wellness-focused design of the Hives follows the assumption that fitter, healthier, and more purposeful people lead to a happier society and more productive economy. How does that check out in practice? 100% of residents are satisfied with the quality and convenience of the homes; 90% feel connected with the people they live with; 60% notice an improvement in their overall health and wellbeing within 90 days; 100% are satisfied with their communication with the Hive team; 90% are proud of the place they live in; and 80% recommend B-Hive Living to their friends.
“The power of community to create health is far greater than any physician, clinic, or hospital.”Mark Hyman
Over the 6 years of activity of B-Hive Living, coliving designed for wellness has proven a healthy and satisfying choice for locals, expats, digital nomads, remote workers, and both singles and couples.
The overwhelmingly unexpected effect of living well together showed in the midst of the Covid -19 pandemic. It was a trying time when coexisting within the restraints of one property and restrictions outside of it could ultimately make or break a group of cohabitants. ”Instead of conflict and withdrawal, we were amazed to see the love, care, and respect people have for each other come alive in our communities. Our residents went out of their way to cook, shop, and do all sorts of discretionary acts of care for each other and their community through volunteering”, says Williams Johnson – CEO of B-Hive Living. “Such culture made many residents, in particular key workers that we were forced to relocate because of the pandemic, return to the Hives afterwards”.
Coliving does not have to, and cannot continue to be solely a way to save money at the cost of personal space and struggling with absent and ignorant landlords. People are made to be social, and living together should be a celebration of a healthy, connected, and fulfilling lifestyle. And B-Hive Living is proof that it’s not only possible, but also needed and sought after. Coliving focused on wellness has a bright future, bringing a profound change in the lives of people, communities, the housing industry, and society.