May I Help You? The Modern Concierge At Your Service

 For most people, there simply are not enough hours in the day to do everything  that needs to be done. We rush to pick the kids up from school, make it to that  impromptu work meeting that just got called or even find the time to grab some  take-out dinner before we climb into bed and do it all again the next day.  

 Thankfully, a growing number of Chicagoland co-op and condo residents are  finding a helping hand as more and more of the city’s residential buildings and communities are offering concierge services. “Everybody on the planet is trying to squeeze 36 hours into 24-hour days,” says Katharine C. Giovanni, CCS, founder and president of Triangle Concierge,  Inc., and founder and chairman of the board of the International Concierge and  Lifestyle Management Association. “The concierge is saying, ‘let me do the things that need to be done so we can give you the time you need  to live.’ ”  

 In Chicago, this kind of service is becoming more of an expectation than a  luxury as more buildings than ever before are offering it. “Chicago has a competitive condo market and to be considered a luxury building  you need to have a concierge available for residents,” says Phil Skowan, a broker with @properties in Chicago. “A lot of people in the condo market are empty nesters selling their suburban  home and moving into the city. And for a lot of people it’s their second home and they like the hassle-free living that comes along with  living in a condo. You don’t have to mow your lawn or you can have someone else make your dinner  reservations for you. It’s extremely convenient.”  

 To address the rising demand for concierge services, more and more condos—particularly larger ones, such as Park Tower, Trump Tower and Eugenie Terrace on  the Park—are including them in their amenities’ offerings.  

 “People tend to enjoy our concierge service providers, they get a lot of traffic,” says Vanessa Casciano, community relations director for Magellan Development  Group whose Chicago properties include condos in Aqua at Lakeshore East and  townhomes at Benton Place Parkhomes. “At these buildings, we offer a complimentary rewards program so they can take  advantage of discounts in area restaurants and other local businesses. We look  at the program as an extra amenity.”  

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