Philippa Turrell visited LivingKitchen in Cologne and found despite the show missing some major brands, it offered inspiration for urban and modern classic projects
Visitors to the LivingKitchen exhibition in Cologne, Germany, will have missed some major furniture and appliance brands – Hacker, Alno, Grohe, BSH Group and Miele, to name a few.
However, it did allow the brands exhibiting at the event to shine a little more brightly.
There were offerings from 271 exhibitors from 28 countries, showcased for over the course of a week.
And there was a clear demarcation of design trends with urban living styling alongside a contemporary take on classic kitchens.
Both these styles were enjoyed by visitors from across the globe, with both native trade attendees and those from further afield cementing the position of LivingKitchen as a global event.
It is why UK & Ireland business manager of Pronorm Jason Grinton said designers who take kitchens seriously should be attending events such as LivingKitchen.
According to the show’s organiser around 150,000 visitors attended the co-located shows of LivingKitchen and international furniture show Imm Cologne. And over half of the visitors (53%) were from outside Germany.
And joining these trade visitors were a further 50,000 consumers at the co-located shows on the public days.
In fact, commenting on the first few days, managing director of Schuller Marcus Schuller said: “Our stand is being well-received. We are very satisfied with the first days. We were able to establish new contacts and hope things will continue this way.”
And his view was re-iterated by chairman of Leicht Stefan Waldenmaier “The trade fair got off to a good start. Visitors from Germany and abroad responded extremely well to our stand. We are very satisfied with the visitor frequency.”
Speaking about the event and its importance to the industry, president and chief executive of Koelmesse Gerald Bose said: “The excellent atmosphere in the halls of LivingKitchenthroughout the trade days shows how important the event is for the industry and for the German economy as a whole.”
And managing director of the Association for Modern Kitchens AMK Volker Irle agreed: “LivingKitchen 2019 was a successful and inspiring event that created an appetite for more.”
The hero launch on the Hoover stand was H-KeepHeat, which according to the company is the world’s first oven designed to preserve hot food, and set for launch in European markets in mid 2019.
Equipped with Exever technology and developed with the University of Parma, H-KeepHeat bakes and stores food at a hot temperature, offering “ready to serve” meals for up to two weeks.
Using the Custom Wizard App, users will also be able to access a recipe book with a selection of dishes and will be able to monitor and manage the oven remotely.
Smart Steam, a range of “steam added” ovens was the story of the Candy stand.
All the ovens can be used in combination with the Candy Simply-Fi app, which suggests recipes created by professional chefs.
They feature an Aquactiva hydrolytic cleaning system, which uses hydrolysis to soften residue on the cavity to ease cleaning.
In addition, selected models provide a double cleaning with the addition of pyrolytic system.
Covering an area of 725sqm, the Nolte stand featured 13 kitchen sets displaying its New Classic style concept, combining Art Deco and 1920s appearances.
At the heart of the range is its latest door Torino Lack (pictured in Oak Pinot).
However, also on display at the event was cement, metal, wood and lacquer finishes, with Marble Grey in the Manhattan range, Oak Sepia added to Legno veneer and Flame-scarfed oak added to the Artwood range.
At the centre of the Blanco stand was the Evol-S Volume, a tap which delivers a prescribed amount of water, negating the need for a measuring jug.
Users simply choose the amount of water using a rotary control and then touch the side- mounted sensor to dispense the water.
This was joined by a pop of colour in the accessories of the Blanco SITY XL 6 S sink and VIUS-S tap, and Concrete-style Silgranit sinks for urban living.
While exponents of the classical kitchens were offered the Blanco Faron with a decorative wooden accessories.
Demonstrating the design flexibility of the kitchen as interior furnishing, Ballerina looked to modularity with Freestyle and Takeaway.
Freestyle is available in wall-hung units or with legs and offers flexibility from a ‘room in room’ kitchen through to blended living space design.
An open storage space, Takeaway, also offered drawers which could be moved around the room or between rooms.
This was joined by the Ritzenhoff décor by illustrator Kathrin Stockebrand and resistant and scratch proof AddedValue surfacing in high gloss, matt gloss and satin glass.
Following on from its hausemesse annual product launch, Pronorm revealed its launches of matt doors in Carmine Red and Dark Green, as well as a matt glass door in grey.
These were joined by matt metallic finishes, black woodgrains and ceramic doors.
Featuring 3mm thick ceramic, with a textured stone finish, designers can choose the door in a choice of four colours on the grey to black spectrum.
Extraction specialist Bora unveiled the Bora Pure and Bora Classic 2.0, both of which have already won the German Council’s Iconic Awards.
The compact Bora Pure is positioned at an entry point for the brand, features an automatic extractor control and an air inlet nozzle in a choice of six colours.
Available in March, the Bora Classic 2.0 features a vertical slider control set within an operating panel , which is virtually invisible when in standby.
Freethinking for room planning was a theme of the Rotpunkt stand with assymetrical design features with different eye lines and proportions in the roomsets.
Dark colours and high texture finishes, across glass, metal and marble-effect laminate were also key looks for the stand with colour-matched worktops .
There was also attention to detail with handles and push-to-open fittings completing the industrial looks.
With the 504sqm space divided between its mid-priced Schuller.C brand and premium Next 125 range, Schuller showcased material combinations and wall-hung, rail storage.
For the Next 125 brand, there were seven ranges on show, including Marble Nero effect ceramic and wood with a freestanding island to a chic look.
And this was complemented by award-winning stylish drawers inserts and rail-mounted panel garden.
For the mid-priced Schuller.C brand, there was influences from ceramic with a concrete anthracite look with accessory wall (shown).
The Scandinavian look with a grey door with wood trim, and industrial with titanium metal fonts combined with diamond glass doors.
Reflecting its motto “more than a kitchen” Nobilia showcased furniture for the utility room, wardrobe and bathroom, adding to kitchen, dining and living room spaces.
It showcased urban lifestyle with open shelving merging with nature with its latest steel, marble, concrete, stone and wood reproduction frontals.
Starting with its entry level range, the line-up included a black concrete reproduction, and this was shown alongside stone grey slate, Inox in brushed steel reproduction, as well as marble effects of Carrara and Teramo.
Extending the finishes of its instant boiling water taps, Quooker showcased black and gold for its Fusion Round and Fusion Square models.
In addition, its recently introduced Classic Fusion and Classic Nordic models were augmented with a nickel finish for Round and Square designs.
All deliver water at 100°C, with the control separate from the standard hot and cold supply, and are available with a cold, filtered water option.
SHARP HOME ELECTRONICS
As part of its latest appliance line-up, Sharp Home Electronics unveiled the TasteMarket and VacPak Pro American-style four door models.
The TasteMaker has a convertible freezer zone and can produce storage conditions for fermenting bread dough, wine and beer or kimchi, while VacPac Pro has an integrated vacuum sealer to prepare for sous vide cooking (shown).
It was shown alongside an Alexa-operated range of appliances, which included oven, fridge freezer, dishwasher and washing machine.