A company that made its name — and a $16 billion valuation — by renting out shared workspaces now wants to do the same thing with dorm-like apartments.
In WeWork’s biggest gamble yet, its co-living micro-apartment space, WeLive, officially opened its doors to New York residents on Monday.
Individual Murphy beds that pull down into the living room behind a curtain or tiny alcoves in a wall start at $1,375 a month. If you want more privacy, rooms start at $2,000. The high price tag — and a $125 amenities fee — helps support “all the coffee, tea, and beer you can drink,” according to the WeLive website.
Each apartment or bed comes fully loaded with towels and linens. There’s also a full-time “community concierge” and a housekeeping team. The laundry room has a ping-pong table and billiards, and a wellness room hosts yoga and barre classes. The fridge comes fully stocked with Smart Water, S.Pellegrino, and beer.
No one ever said that city living was cheap, but WeWork is betting that its WeLive spaces will be the start of a new movement. They’re perfect landing pads for people moving to a city looking for instant friends and not having any furniture. Whether those people stay — and become WeWork members — will be the crucial litmus test.
If turnover is too high, it could start feeling more like a hotel and less like a communal neighborhood of friends all with really tiny bedrooms. The month-to-month leases are great flexibility for its residents, but could be hard on WeWork’s bottom line if it can’t fill the Murphy beds fast enough.
Currently the company has two locations: one in New York and one in Crystal City, Virginia, near Washington DC. The Crystal City location is slightly cheaper, with beds starting at $1,000 and private rooms beginning at $1,300, but it won’t officially launch until May 1.
WeLive’s average apartment size is 450 square feet. This studio starts at $2,000 a month.
Each apartment comes fully stocked with the basics for your kitchen.
Everything is fully furnished, down to the sheets on the bed, too. WeLive’s vibe ends up looking like an upscale IKEA.
The bathroom also comes fully stocked, and a welcome duffel gives you some toiletry basics when you arrive.
A $125 amenities fee includes a monthly cleaning service. It also takes care of all the cable, internet, utilities, and laundry that are normally a part of renting.
The feel also covers gym classes, like barre and yoga, and other community activities.
WeLive purposefully kept the rooms small to encourage people to go out and use the community spaces.
The hallways are lined with comfy couches so people have room to work.
A giant communal kitchen table is for residents to eat their meals and enjoy the monthly catered potluck dinners.
There’s even a rooftop for people to enjoy, which will soon be complete with a Jacuzzi.