Luxury cannabis: high-end hedonism with staying power
The cannabis market has been developing for decades now, with consumers growing up alongside the fledgling industry. I am one of those consumers and, as a weed journalist, I’ve been keeping tabs on various niche branches of the industry for almost a decade. One particularly intriguing sector is luxury cannabis.
Luxury cannabis is a term that represents a tier of products, experiences, and offerings that cater to a consumer whose weed budget is on the higher end. Ashtrays that cost hundreds of dollars, all inclusive infused resort stays, high-priced dispensaries, and upscale ambiance can all fall into this category.
Defining luxury cannabis
When I think of what to categorize as luxury, I think of quality and price. However, high prices don’t always mean quality. Pursuing a job as a cannabis reporter before it existed hasn’t been the most lucrative path. I’m doing fine now, don’t stress. So, as I watched luxury brands hit the market over the years, I couldn’t help but feel a pang of jealousy.
The gorgeous petal ashtrays and novel devices felt unattainable to me, simply beyond my budget. This made me salty. I questioned whether the cannabis space needed these highfalutin items. Now, my tune has changed. I find myself seeking high-quality pieces that can last generations and view the industry like I do clothing and other traditional sectors.
Although I liked what I saw, a few years ago I wasn’t the target consumer for luxury products of any kind. There are defined sectors in every market. From the five-dollar wine bin prices, all the way to a Cheval Blanc that costs over $300k per bottle, there’s wine for every budget. Of course I’m interested in finding out what a half-a-million-dollar bottle of wine tastes like, but as I pick up my usual $15 biodynamic bottle of red from the local co-op I can be realistic about whether that luxury bottle is meant for me.
I was dismayed that I couldn’t afford luxury cannabis products But that doesn’t mean there wasn’t a place for them. This has been proved by a few brands that are carving out what it means to be high-end in weed. The first that comes to mind is Houseplant, a cannabis company, accessories, and home goods purveyor co-owned by Evan Goldberg and celeb stoner Seth Rogen.
Brands and products in the space
Houseplant excited stoners from all walks of life, promising ashtrays modeled after Rogen’s handmade pottery and California flower line. However, many clicked the website that first day (it crashed multiple times from too many visitors) only to find there was no way they could drop almost $60 on a small mass-produced ash tray modeled after Rogen’s original work. This led to some ire from fans that continues in the brand’s Instagram comments to this day.
Even so, the products sold out quickly. I have the original Houseplant Ashtray Set and will say it is good quality and functional for those who keep one lit. The line remains successful, but it doesn’t prove the concept. Rogen has international fame and is beloved by most cannabis consumers I meet. So, can luxury brands without this notoriety thrive in the same way?
In 2020, a luxury bong brand called Ceremony hit my radar via LinkedIn. They crafted stunning crystal bongs that were over $2000 but also made from pure stones. Unfortunately, they aren’t around anymore. The end of Ceremony shows that while many people will pay high prices for accessories and devices, they might not be willing to go that high.
Last week luxury brand Amitha successfully launched its Objets d’art, a curated accessories line of cannabis pieces. The shop features items from fellow high-end headshop Sackville & Co, Tsubota Pearl novel lighter, various joint cases, and more.
The Magritte Pipe, functional fine art designed exclusively for Amitha by LA glass artist Sibelle Yüksek, is the showstopper of the shop.
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Though the pieces are beautiful and well-curated, it’s ultimately the cannabis consumers who decide if the brand will make it.
The future of luxury cannabis
There are wines, clothes, foods, and even grocery stores designed to cater to people working with every budget. Why not weed? In the last few years, that question has been answered as more goods don dispensary shelves and enter online shops. Though skincare girlies are still waiting for worthwhile luxury cannabis serums, there are some high-end products worth their weight. It seems that luxury cannabis is here to stay, whether people complain on Reddit about it or not.