By Dr Niranjan Hiranandani, CMD, Hiranandani Communities
The well-heeled, well-educated and affluent home buyers of today are constantly on the lookout for luxury real estate projects that offer them high value, a unique status symbol, and state-of-the-art amenities. This has resulted in the rise of modern, sophisticated integrated township models, which provide global standards of living, a superior quality of life, community building opportunities and a vibrant neighbourhood.
Real estate players are today offering a platter of diversified and innovative services that provide the concept of holistic living—work, live and play within the confines of a township, across huge acreage of land. Taking the concept of holistic living several notches higher are sports-based townships, which focus on providing a better quality of life and promoting a healthy lifestyle among consumers.
Drivers of this trend
Rising awareness of fitness, the need for an active and healthy lifestyle, an aspiration for an international lifestyle, and keenness for recreation are the compelling factors for the rising affinity towards sports-based townships across the country. These sports-based townships provide home buyers easy and flexible access to a wide range of sports facilities and help build their physical and mental fitness and endurance.
Fitness is no longer a fad, as consumers make a conscious decision to beat stress and stay active. And being active in sports is the best way to achieve this. Sports cultivate traits like team spirit, helps overcome fear and strengthens power. It is also a great stress-buster and helps one network with like-minded people and hone soft skills. It also helps build an attitude of relentless pursuit, determination and goal achievement – all necessary to succeed in corporate life too.
Given the paucity of time and limited access to resources, one cannot go out of the way to meet the needs for physical activity in clean and green spaces. So, it makes immense sense for real estate developers to offer recreational/sporting facilities at one’s doorstep, within the confines of the township, which can be accessed anytime by anyone.
Affluence is another key driver of this growth. With an impressive rise in salaries and disposable income, consumers are seeking more value, attractive and differentiated offerings, which sports-oriented townships are able to offer.
Plethora of facilities
These sports townships come equipped with superior sporting facilities and infrastructures like tennis courts, cricket grounds, skating rink, and a golf course. Residents can also get trained under professionals here as the complexes house training academies run by professional sportspersons for sports like tennis, cricket, shooting and golf.
These townships promise sports and recreational facilities for a diverse set of people, across age-groups and lifestyles: be it senior citizens, working professionals, young couples or children.
There is something for everyone: hi-tech sports facilities for upscale men and women, play areas for children, world-class coaching programs for budding sporting stars, and ample walking space for the elderly in lush green and clean environs.
Trendsetters in the game
Sports-based townships are catching up in the Delhi-NCR region, Pune, Chennai and Kolkata, Mumbai. One such trendsetting township is Hiranandani Parks at Oragadam, near Chennai. It is a 400-acre mixed-used township that offers a day-and-night 55-acre golf facility, along with other sporting options such as cricket, squash, tennis, basketball, equestrian, volleyball, polo, swimming pool and Skating. The meticulously-planned, well-thought-out township is attracting many top corporate executives who wish to take a break from work and indulge in a sport or two. It offers world-class sporting facilities and infrastructure amidst luxurious settings. Hiranandani’s vision is to nurture an Olympic winner at its township, as a payback to society.
The government has been encouraging this new boom in realty development as it helps increase the green belts of the city, ease traffic congestion, and boost the well-being of its citizens. In Chennai, the state government agencies are giving sports-based lifestyle a big push. ( A 1,500-acre multi-purpose integrated ‘sports city’, a project undertaken by TIDCO, on behalf of the Tamil Nadu government, is coming up on the IT corridor.)
Win-win for all
At the end of the day, the concept of sports-townships provides a win-win for all stakeholders. Homebuyers get the best-in-class facilities and opportunity for high property appreciation; real estate developers realize better returns on investment. It is also a good investment opportunity for sports personalities and celebrities who wish to partner with reputed names in the real estate business.