There are so many new and exciting design trends in the kitchen and bath industry. The annual Kitchen and Bath Show (KBIS) was held in late January this year in beautiful Las Vegas, Nevada. The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show is the world’s largest tradeshow event dedicated to exhibiting products intended for the kitchen and bath. With this informative show in our own “backyard,” the designers at Mallett Design Works decided to take a road trip to learn more about the latest innovations in the industry.
Technology in the kitchen and bath was trending at this year’s show, with smart home research leading the way in the latest innovations. There was prototype display at KBIS developed by the Virginia Tech Center for Design Research called FutureHAUS. This futuristic display explores how technology can be used to enhance user experience throughout the kitchen. There is a camera in the oven that allows bakers to monitor their confections from anywhere in the house and sensors in the refrigerator that detect when staples such as milk are running low or are out of date. There are high definition displays mounted in the backsplash where they can serve as a virtual window or a handy place to display recipes while cooking and a giant tablet referred to a “social table” that is mounted in the kitchen island. A smooth glass countertop provides an uninterrupted work surface, but with convection burners mounted beneath it, it serves as a cooktop when needed. The designers say the FutureHAUS will adapt to owners’ needs, automatically adjusting “temperature, security, lighting and more, based on voice recognition, touch, gestures, and motion.”
The best of show for KBIS 2015 belongs to Tech Top by LG Hausys. Tech Top provides a wireless charging solution for your devices. LG Hausys produces Hi-Macs, an eco-friendly solid surface and Viatera surfaces, a natural quartz stone. Tech Top can be embedded into any Hi-Macs or Viatera surface by a certified fabricator. The back of the surface is routed out and the Tech Top transmitter is embedded. The AC adapter is then plugged in and your device can be charged without wires by simply placing it directly above the transmitter.
From refrigerators that can brew a cup of coffee to ovens with a camera and different compartments for baking, these are just a few of the latest innovations in appliances.
The convenience of single-serve pod coffeemakers has made them among the fastest-growing small appliances on the market. One downside is the loss of counter space, especially for consumers with compact kitchens. GE’s Cafe Series refrigerator incorporates hot water into the door and has partnered with Keurig to make the most of this feature. A K-Cup module snaps into the water dispenser and when hot water is
ready, it filters through the K-Cup just like a Keurig, and directly into your waiting coffee cup. The dispenser is also Wi-Fi enabled, meaning you can preset the brew time via your smart phone so that water in the reservoir will be hot when you’re ready for your morning cup.
Samsung offers a counter-depth convertible refrigerator that allows the lower right section to convert between a fridge and freezer, based on your needs. The company also offers a Flex Duo range with a removable Smart Divider that can be used to create different cooking options in one oven. Each cavity is controlled separately, complete with its own convection features, allowing the user to cook two vastly different dishes at one time.
Many manufactures offer dual fuel ranges and they continue to be a hot trend this year. These ranges combine a gas cooktop with an electric oven. This configuration is a favorite option among chefs of all skill levels.
Niagara Conservation introduces the Hot Start showerhead. When you open the shower valve, water will flow out of the showerhead until the temperature of the water reaches 95 degrees. Once the water reaches 95 degrees, water will begin to trickle out of the showerhead, thus saving the consumer water, energy and money.
Just by using water-efficient plumbing products, the average American can reduce his or her daily water use from 70 to 43 gallons. A family of four would save 39,000 gallons of water per year!
The Hot Start Showerhead is the newest part of Niagara Conservation’s Stealth System. The Stealth System includes the Hot Start Showerhead, three high-efficiency faucet aerators (two bath and one kitchen) and a choice of either a single flush or dual flush Stealth ultra-high-efficiency toilet (UHET).
With all of this technology at our fingertips, it may only be a matter of time until we live in the same world as our favorite futuristic cartoon characters, the Jetsons! FBN
By Michelle Mallett
Michelle Mallett is the owner and principal designer at Mallett Design Works, a design firm specializing in customized kitchen and bath design. Michelle is a certified in kitchen and bath design by the NKBA and is and Allied Member of ASID. To discuss how Mallett Design Works can help you achieve a space that exceeds your design expectations, call Michelle at 928-699-1405. You may also visit her website at www.mallettdesignworks.com to see a full list of services and portfolio.