KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
9th September 2016
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The various children's room ideas and furnishings for princesses, from Portuguese manufacturer Circu, offer a big choice for interior design, with the availability of everything that corresponds to the fairy tale - down to the last detail.
I don’t tend to mention companies in these leaders but feel I’m on a mission today…
My daughter has moved into a lovely new flat with a beautifully fitted out kitchen that is missing one thing: a microwave. And although there wasn’t much room for one, we consider them a necessity.
“Don’t worry,” I assured her. “I’ll contact Whirlpool and buy you a new Max.”
I have a Max at home. As well as being a great little microwave, it’s a real talking point with newcomers to my kitchen who ask: “What on earth’s that?”. I then go into demo mode, showing off the functions and how it glows either red, blue, green or silver, depending upon which function is used. It plays jingles too!
What makes it really special though, is its shape. Talk about inspired thinking! It’s rounded at the back, so it snuggles into a corner, facing outwards across the room and enabling users to remove hot dishes from head on, rather than forcing them to lean across the worktop and sometimes around the open door, which is awkward and can cause burns… genius!
I was dismayed to learn that Whirlpool has stopped making the Max. Companies are spending thousands of pounds on research to tweak their products above the competition’s offerings, yet rarely do I find something so stand-out brilliant as the Max microwave – now discontinued! I’m starting a campaign, which I think that if you’re a Max owner you’ll readily support, to ‘Bring back the Max’? Will you join me?
Another Whirlpool initiative, which I love, is its instigation of a ‘National Quiet Day’, taking place next Wednesday (see more below).
I have to say, it’s not household appliances that drive me nuts with their noise, but noisy people; I abhor unnecessary loudness… having to listen to shouty conversations from those who have no dignity when it comes to sharing their intimate secrets with strangers, who are forced to listen whether they want to or not. They’re not on stage, after all! What is it with people these days?
I’m hoping Whirlpool can, over time, expand its National Quiet Day’ to include quietness in general – every day, and that by drawing attention to the need for us all to have peace and quiet in our lives, the quietness will become the norm rather than requiring a special day for its celebration…
This Week's News
Of the 95% of tradespeople currently working, the majority (67%) say they have enough work to keep them busy and 16% claim to have more work than they can handle, with nearly half (48%) believing business will improve for them over the next year.
Peace and quiet is good for you, both physically and mentally. Studies have shown that taking time for quiet can have a positive effect on your body and in some cases can even lower blood pressure and reduce the heart rate. However, it is increasingly difficult in today's world to experience real quiet, and that's why Whirlpool, the maker of the washing machine with the quietest spin cycle on the market, is establishing a National Quiet Day.
Utopia Bathrooms has introduced Sensuelle, its first freestanding luxury bath. The new bath is part of the Roseberry Collection, Utopia's recently launchednpainted timber range, but can also be teamed with other Utopia furniture.
The Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association has reported a record number of bookings already for this year's AGM, National Conference and Networking Dinner being held at The Welcombe Hotel, Stratford on Avon, on 27th September. During the dinner, the 2016 KBSA Designer Awards will be presented.
Many of the shortlisted entrants have already booked their places. In addition, the KBSA Excellence Awards; namely the KBSA Customer Service Award along and with the KBSA Training Award, (sponsored by the CITB) and the Supplier Awards are also being presented.
Following a successful corporate rebrand this January, the business's popular bathroom furniture brand, Novum, will now be known as HiB Novum as shown in a new logo, website, brochure and even a new showroom at the company's National Distribution Centre in Tamworth. This latest move is part of a wider strategy to more closely align the range to HiB and its overriding ethos on 'making bathrooms beautiful'.
Having lived in their house in Knaresborough, near Harrogate, North Yorkshire, since it was built 20 years ago, Anne and Arthur Page took the decision to update the en-suite bathroom to their master bedroom. They opted for products from Abacus Bathrooms for the entire project, choosing everything from tiles, taps and shower fittings to basins, lights and cabinets.
The detached six-bedroom house had been the show home so the original bathroom had been built to a good standard but it was beginning to look old fashioned and tired and was leaking into the garage below. Anne and Arthur were keen to create a bathroom that was practical but had a wow factor so the old corner bath, bidet and small shower cubicle were ripped out and the Artex-coated ceiling was skimmed over.
Following the success of its first Elite Honours List event in 2015, the Cosentino Group has once again celebrated its very best Elite Premium studios in the UK and Ireland.
September sees the introduction of the latest Abode kitchen sink and tap brochure which is available in a hard copy format, as well as viewable online via Abode's interactive brochure, or downloadable in a pdf format.
The Abode ranges have always been ahead in terms of technology, design and status and they are exquisitely formed and designed to fit into contemporary and classically styled kitchens - and all of these can now be seen in one beautifully produced brochure.
Haier used IFA 2016 to showcase the first custom colour, combi fridge-freezer, which allows customers to select their preferred colour from a nearly unlimited palette for perfect integration into any interior. Haier tells us it is the only home appliance manufacturer to offer this new customisation feature, which is available exclusively with the company's 60 and 70 Series combi fridge-freezer models.
Pierig Bouret, European Project Manager at Haier Europe, said: "We are always looking for new ways to please our customers which is why we're pleased to announce brand new customisation options on Haier's 60 and 70 Series combi fridge-freezers.
Mike Proctor joins the business bringing with him over 25 years' experience within the furniture manufacturing industry. Mike's new role helps to drive the manufacturing process of the Burbidge's elegant new Simply Burbidge range.
Kitchen door & component supplier Uform has announced a recent new appointment to its UK sales team. Mark Tomlinson joins the company with responsibility for the East Midlands and South Yorkshire area and will be key in helping to further penetrate the UK market in line with the company's planned growth strategy.
With a degree in Business & Management, Mark has eight years' experience of the hospitality industry and five years' sales experience including a position with Arco, one of the UK's largest safety equipment suppliers.
Warren is responsible for new product training for staff, supporting them with product queries, dealing with technical questions from customers, working closely with the company on new product development and looking at ongoing product improvement within the current TKC portfolio. Warren is moving into the role with nine years' experience at TKC, most recently as trade counter manager, and 22 years' experience in the kitchen and bathroom industry.
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Apart from price, which is always top of the list, there should be two main priorities for anyone investing in a new bathroom. The first is that the product should be of excellent quality and should conform with all the relevant standards and regulations. The second is that it should be installed correctly, safely and efficiently, by qualified and competent installers.
Croydex has been granted a patent for its Flexi-Fix 'X' plate following a successful application to the UK Intellectual Property Office.