Luxury Apartments Use Smart Technology for Total Control
Imagine starting every work day by carefully adjusting 20 TVs, 30 zones of audio, 10 climate zones and more than 40 lighting dimmers spread out across multiple buildings on several acres of land. It no doubt sounds like a daunting task.
By the time local technology integrators Sound Concepts were finished with the new Bowman Pointe luxury living apartment community in West Little Rock, Arkansas, however, it wasn’t daunting at all. In fact, according to Bowman Pointe’s Community Director Shelley Ellis, controlling all the required daily tasks became as easy as checking her iPhone — thanks to the powerful ELAN Entertainment & Control System that controls virtually every task.
“I would lose several hours each day if all of the property’s technology was controlled individually,” Ellis said, “but with the ELAN system, all I have to do is scroll through the app and double-check that everything turns on and off and is set as it’s supposed to be. I can look at every public space, every TV, every light, and even view the surveillance camera feeds. By creating automated schedules for everything from the music to the irrigation system, the staff and I have more time to focus on residents’ requests and our regular duties. As clichéd as it may sound, automation is a life-saver around here.”
Through the ELAN app, staff can control the electronics in every public space on the property, including the indoor and outdoor TVs, audio with more than 150 speakers, security with more than 75 surveillance cameras, climate, lighting, irrigation, an outdoor movie theater, heaters and fire pits. To make changes, residents simply call the concierge, open every day until 10 pm, and a staff member can either enact the requested changes remotely or visit the resident if assistance is required. Management can easily set different levels of access for staff members. The technology provides a higher level of service and comfort to residents, and all of this is done through a single app controlled through a single ELAN gSC10 System Controller.
“Bowman Pointe is a resort-style community,” Ellis continued. “At a resort, the guests are pampered and expect only the best and most helpful service from resort staff. That’s how we operate here, and technology is a big reason we can be so efficient and offer these services and amenities for reasonably priced apartments. It allows residents to enjoy the property without worrying about anything. Simply put, the level of service here is far above any other community in Little Rock, other than our sister property, Pointe Brodie Creek.”
Indeed, Bowman Pointe is Richardson Properties, LLC’s second high-end living community and is located just across the street from the its first community, The Pointe Brodie Creek. That property also has a fully integrated ELAN control system, and its success paved the way for the development of Bowman Pointe. The experience also provided insight into how residents use community spaces, leading to changes such as a larger pool and a more intimate movie theater.
The Bowman Pointe community boasts Arkansas’ largest privately owned pool, built in a Las Vegas style with surrounding cabanas, fire pits and a clubhouse. Other on-site amenities include a 24-hour fitness center, 16-seat commercial-grade movie theater, poker lounge with casino-style tables, a wine cellar for residents to use, a business center, tanning bed, a sports lounge with billiards and shuffleboard tables, a Starbucks java bar, conference room, a pet park with an agility training course, a bocce ball court and a putting green.
Jonesboro-based Sound Concepts also had another trick up their sleeves: The entire Bowman Pointe community can become a giant colorful light show, with more than 1.2 miles of LED tape lighting that can turn any color and is controlled through an iPhone.
“The LED lighting is like nothing we’ve ever done before,” said Jimmy Smith, Operations Manager at Sound Concepts. “Each building at Bowman Pointe has three floors, and each floor has archways lined with RGB tape lighting that is app-controlled and can be used for mood lighting and holiday celebrations. On holidays like Christmas, the buildings could have alternating green and red archways, and the staff could even set rolling programs where the colors and brightness change throughout the day. Additionally, every common area has tape lighting in the ceiling, with each room controlled individually. It’s a feature that absolutely elevates the community’s ambience to the level of a luxury resort.”
In addition to the amenities that wow residents and guests, a community like Bowman Pointe requires efficiency, and that’s exactly what the ELAN system provides. Not only are there pre-programmed schedules that automatically adjust lights, TVs, climate controls and more, but also pre-programmed ‘scenes’ allow staff to make rapid changes on a large scale. The night concierge staff uses a “clubhouse evening” scene to automatically set all the pool lights and front sign with one button. Another valuable addition is the integration of intercoms with the ELAN system, so Ellis can make announcements through the property’s speakers from her iPhone when the pool or concierge is closing, or in case of an emergency.
The seamlessness of the technology is particularly impressive to the property’s owners. Case in point, there are no thermostats anywhere on the premises. Temperature is monitored by sensors through the buildings, and then controlled through the ELAN app. It is completely invisible, keeping in style with the in-ceiling speakers, professionally mounted TVs, recessed LED lighting and even two in-wall Sunfire subwoofers in the theater for earth-rattling bass without any intrusion in the room’s design. With this attention to detail and commitment to an affordable, upscale living atmosphere, Bowman Pointe is on track to sell out as fast as The Pointe Brodie Creek did just two years ago.
“Richardson Properties, LLC found a formula that works,” Smith concluded. “By building affordable, highly attractive communities where singles, couples and families can live and enjoy fabulous amenities, they’ve virtually guaranteed that every apartment is occupied. We’re excited to continue working with them and using the ELAN system to offer staff full control and scheduling of every major function on the property.”
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