HIX was back this month and bathroom manufacturers were out in force with plenty of exciting hotel design ideas to inspire residential interiors – Amelia Thorpe rounds up 4 key trends from the show.
The Hotel Interiors Experience (HIX) show returned to London’s Business Design Centre this month (16th - 17th November 2023), with more than 15 bathroom manufacturers adding to the inspirational mix of latest launches and innovations on show amidst furniture, lighting, fabric and textile exhibitors. Here are the 4 key trends from the show:
Grohe displayed its Atrio and Allure Brilliant Private Collection brassware, which offers customisable options to match clients’ personal preferences. Partnering with Caesarstone, tap handles are available inset with two of the brand’s quartz designs, with taps themselves available in a variety of different colour, finish and style options. "The collection is centred on luxury and flexibility, so customers can choose an individual look, co-ordinating with Caesarstone countertops and wall coverings as they wish," says Karl Lennon, leader Grohe Spa LIXIL EMENA, adding that we can expect more lines with Caesarstone shortly.
"The desire for bespoke touches is increasing," advises Stefan Gesing, CEO of Dornbracht AG & Co KG. "The trend for varied brassware colours and finishes is being enhanced with the desire for more individual elements – embellished handles with hammered metal, hand crafted glass or inlays made from seashells are creating a more tactile and sensory experience."
Bathroom colour was amply evident – from Majestic Shower Company’s rich burgundy-coloured enclosures to Roca’s display of Nu brassware in blue, grey and honey yellow. "The trend towards coloured brassware in hospitality is well established, and the Nu collection takes that a step further by utilising bold non-metallic colours in a way which encapsulates the spirit and innovation of Mediterranean design," says Jon Bond, Roca head of UK projects.
More eye-catching colour drew visitors to the Duravit stand, with its row of Millio wall-hung WCs which can be manufactured in any colour (orders of 16 units and above) – and in two textures: a ribbed and patterned relief design. Says Duravit UK MD Martin Carroll: "We manufacture about 200,000 SKUs, so people don’t necessarily know the breadth of what we do," he explains. "It is important to show that we are at the cutting edge of design, to demonstrate our flexibility – and not just display standard gloss white."
From its permanent showroom at the Centre, Villeroy & Boch joined in with eye-catching displays of its Antao range – featuring organic-inspired dewdrop-shaped bath and basins in soft nature-inspired colours.
3. LIFESTYLE LUXURY
Top-end Italian brassware manufacturer Gessi emphasised luxury, a white-gloved team member unveiling its jewellery-like Perla and fashion-inspired bamboo Jacqueline tap collections in elegant boxes, whilst a waiter offered shots of espresso and exquisitely wrapped chocolates. "Our customers are used to shopping in Cartier and other luxury stores, which is why we are focussed on creating an experience for visitors, new for our industry," explains Kieran Morris, sales and project manager at Casa Gessi London. Given that luxury focus, personalisation is evident here too – Gessi offers 36 different finishes. "And we’ll be launching more next year," says Morris. "Only about 8% of our sales in the UK are now chrome, while currently Bronze, Black Metal and Brushed Brass are most popular."
Laufen celebrated ‘a new era of connectivity’ with its solid surface Val bath, featuring remote controlled integrated chromotherapy illumination, and its MEDA shower system. Designed to offer ‘the ultimate spa experience’ to hotel guests, the system features a 12” touch screen display integrated into the shower, for guests to select their preferred temperature, pressure and flow of water, as well as choice of showerhead.