up·​scale | \ ˈəp-ˈskāl How to pronounce upscale (audio) \

Definition of upscale

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: relating to, being, or appealing to affluent consumers also : of a superior quality


upscaled; upscaling; upscales

Definition of upscale (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to make (something) more appealing to affluent consumers : to make (something) more upscale The council is renaming them the Fashion Awards, globalizing them, moving the hoopla around them to the Royal Albert Hall and otherwise upscaling them.— Vanessa Friedman "Everybody's trying to upscale men's colognes because the prestige brands have taken share from the mass brands," says cosmetics industry consultant Allan Mottus.— Ronald Alsop also : to improve the quality of (something) … even retained a handwriting teacher to upscale her penmanship—no more tiny circles over her i's. — Brad Darrach
2 : to increase the size; scope, or scale of (something) A star is an upscaled nuclear reactor, not a bonfire.— Laurence A. Marschall As a result, an upscaling of the problem of underrepresentation to the national scale mobilizes scalar politics …— Emily Skop



Definition of upscale (Entry 3 of 3)

: to or toward the upper, more expensive end of a range of products or services He tried to move upscale—toward higher-cost, higher-profit garments, which, in theory, would be less susceptible to price competition.— James Lardner … chef Celestino Drago has taken Sicilian cuisine upscale in his chic Santa Monica restaurant.— Thomas Matthews

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Synonyms & Antonyms for upscale

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of upscale in a Sentence

Adjective a new upscale shopping center is under construction on the west end of town
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The plans include an upscale décor, a full-service bar with cocktails, wine and beer, a lounge and a new concession menu including pizza and popcorn cooked with olive oil and sea salt. Carole Carlson,, 19 July 2021 KAABOO San Diego is set to return after a two-year hiatus, although details about exactly when and where the upscale music, comedy and food festival will take place are unclear. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 19 July 2021 Her Brûlée Bike — like an upscale ice cream cart — is another fun addition to the local culinary scene. Susan Dunne,, 19 July 2021 The property that became known as Bruce’s Beach is along the shoreline in Manhattan Beach, now an upscale city. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 17 July 2021 The great room flows into the kitchen, which is equipped with an island with a sink, upscale appliances and backyard views. Dallas News, 17 July 2021 One of the few to fail was Pulino’s, an upscale pizzeria Mr. McNally opened on the Bowery in 2010. New York Times, 17 July 2021 In addition, gun-control laws are not equally enforced in upscale neighborhoods. Cody J. Wisniewski, National Review, 16 July 2021 The park draws on its setting — the beautiful Bahamas — in its tasteful and upscale theming, with shades of green, blue, and sand to reflect the area's natural beauty. Elizabeth Rhodes, Travel + Leisure, 16 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'upscale.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of upscale


1966, in the meaning defined above


1963, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1977, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for upscale

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The first known use of upscale was in 1963

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Dictionary Entries Near upscale

ups and downs



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Statistics for upscale

Last Updated

21 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Upscale.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for upscale



English Language Learners Definition of upscale

 (Entry 1 of 2)

US : relating to or appealing to people who have a lot of money



English Language Learners Definition of upscale (Entry 2 of 2)

US : to make (something) more appealing to people who have a lot of money

More from Merriam-Webster on upscale

Nglish: Translation of upscale for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of upscale for Arabic Speakers


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