If you want to fit in with fancy people, don’t bother wasting money on a three-car garage, home gym or solarium. These days, snoring rooms — that’s right snoring rooms — are the true signifier of modern sensibilities and disposable income.
Like many cohabiting couples, as the Washington Postreported, rich Brits occasionally exile bedfellows who snore like foghorns, hog duvets, enjoy late-night Netflix binges or otherwise disrupt their partners’ rest. But, rather than relocate to creaky pull-outs or provincial multi-purpose guest rooms, these wealthy sleep-divorcees retreat to their own, well-appointed quarters designated specifically for their overnight use. Why? Because they can.
Between 30 and 40 percent of couples sleep separately, according to a 2013 study from researchers at Ryer University in Toronto. While the practice may be seeing a resurgence, it’s by no means new: Until Victorian times, blissfully happy twosomes commonly bid adieu at bedtime.
And while “they’re sleeping in separate rooms” might be considered a euphemism for “their relationship is crumbling like stale pound cake,” plenty of psychologists and other sleep experts say solo shut-eye neither indicates nor preempts romantic doom. For people whose sleeping habits don’t jibe, separate beds may simply be healthier. One 2009 study suggested that married people who share beds suffer 50 percent more “harm from sleep,” a category comprising physical and emotional health issues.
The rise of snoring rooms is probably no surprise, however, to those in the business of home design or construction. As a Glamourstory from six years ago mentioned, a “survey of builders and architects found that many are predicting that by 2015 double master bedrooms will be the norm.”
The prediction may be coming true, at least for high-earners in the UK. Then again, forecasting new ways to justify emptying deep pockets hardly seems like a gamble. We can just hear the cocktail conversation now: Harold and I just can’t bear to take the risk of not building a snoring room. Sleep deprivation is an epidemic, as I’m sure you know.
Sleep is becoming yet another item that broadens the gap between social classes.