NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - November 10, 2010) - With the economy in the throes of a difficult recovery, affluent Americans consider that the most valued goods, services and experiences are not material in nature, but leisure-oriented pursuits. This finding is a result of new research conducted by the Luxury Institute, in cooperation with Resonance Consultancy, of households with an average income of $332K and net worth of $3.3 million. The conclusions suggest that while conspicuous consumption is on the wane, conspicuous leisure may soon be on the rise.

"Affluent households today consider leisure-oriented pursuits such as exotic vacations, vacation homes, the freedom to work from home and extended time off work to be the most desirable luxuries," says Chris Fair, president of Resonance Consultancy. "It's a significant change from the past when the most desired luxuries were usually material goods."

Despite the recession, the tastes of the affluent have changed little since the last survey was conducted in 2008, with only the desires for electric/hybrid cars and jewelry dropping significantly. "In tough economic times, it's not surprising that wealthy consumers are shying away from more visual displays of wealth such as fine jewelry and watches," says Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute. "The good news is that the desirability of philanthropy has held steady. Large gifts are a very public way of communicating status."

Companies that will benefit from the U.S. shift from conspicuous consumption to conspicuous leisure are likely to be high-end resorts, highly-differentiated hotels and experience purveyors from travel and tour curators to leisure outfitters.

About the Luxury Institute
The Luxury Institute is the objective and independent global voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute conducts extensive and actionable research with wealthy consumers about their behaviors and attitudes on customer experience best practices. In addition, we work closely with top-tier luxury brands to successfully transform their organizational cultures into more profitable customer-centric enterprises. The Luxury Institute also operates, a membership-based online research portal, and the Luxury CRM Association, a membership organization dedicated to building customer-centric luxury enterprises.

About Resonance Consultancy
Resonance Consultancy specializes in developing brand strategies and stories for innovative organizations, places and products to generate awareness and influence perceptions.

Contact Information:

The Luxury Institute, LLC
Martin Swanson
(914) 909-6350

Resonance Consultancy Ltd
Chris Fair
(646) 413 8887