Club Together: New Clubs for Like-Minded Consumers
A new wave of members-only social clubs for like-minded individuals is creating welcoming spaces designed to fulfil a consumer craving for connection and belonging.
The Wing – the modern progenitor of these spaces – has welcomed an enthusiastic millennial audience to its women-only co-working/community spaces since launching in 2016. In the last three years, it has expanded to seven clubs; this September, The Wing will make an international debut in London. We highlight the entrepreneurs taking inspiration from The Wing’s members-only model.
- Connecting People of Colour: New Yorker Najla Austin’s Ethels Club – intended as The Wing for people of colour – opens in Brooklyn later this year. It includes a shop and café open to the public, along with a members’ space designed for “a community that has traditionally been overlooked and isolated from public spaces”
- A Third Place for Parents: Backed by venture investors including Female Founders Fund, The Wonder targets affluent NYC parents (annual family fees are $4,800). Kids can play, parents can work and socialise, and the family can attend events. Like The Wing, the Tribeca space is highly Instagrammable. To encourage interaction, mobile phone use is banned in most spaces.
NY-based Female Founders Fund is channelling investment into concepts that fill a vacuum left by the declining role of religion in America, said partner Anu Duggal at last month’s Collision conference. The Wonder is the first brick-and-mortar start-up in its portfolio.
- Cannabis-Friendly Hideout: The new era of recreationally legal cannabis in California has spawned stylish members’ club Mota in downtown LA. It exemplifies cannabis’s integration into luxury lifestyles: for $2,000 a year, members can access a lounge, work-friendly spaces, a café, weekly events, as well as a spa and a shop. For more on canna-consumers, see our Commercialising Cannabis reports.