The bathroom is no longer seen as merely a functional, necessary room in the home. More and more, bathrooms are growing into a potential showpiece element of the house, considered ripe as an outlet for both artistic expression and creative design. In this issue of The Hardware Journal, we look at the evolving world of bathrooms and what the future might hold in store.
UK bathroom market experiences growth across all sectors
The UK bathroom market is heavily influenced by the house-building, commercial, and RMI sectors. Estimated at over £320m in 2017, baths and sanitary-ware are by a significant margin the largest sector of the bathroom products market by value, followed by bathroom accessories, taps and mixers, and bathroom furniture. Sales of baths and sanitary-ware continued on an upward trend in 2017. The market for taps and mixers has seen strong growth since 2014 onward, with a peak of 6% in 2016. The bathroom furniture sector has also experienced solid growth over the same period. When designing their bathrooms, homeowners are increasingly investing in coordinating product designs that offer both longevity and luxury.
Design has gained importance in commercial applications such as schools and hospitals, in a shift towards more domestic-oriented styling. The growth of showering is likely to add more pressure to the baths sector, with around 90% of homes having at least one shower. In bathroom installations such as en-suites, householders are beginning to favour shower enclosures and wet-room areas at the expense of baths.
B&G on the frontline of cutting-edge bathroom tech
According to a recent AMA Research Bathroom Market Report, the growth trends in bathrooms are predicted to hit 12% this year. The report states that “LED mirrors and Bluetooth entertainment systems will become more widely used in the bathroom as consumers and businesses become increasingly aware of their benefits.”*
B&G have launched a new range of Tema LED Mirrors, which include built-in Bluetooth speakers, concealed demisters, and magnifying mirrors. Tom Cleary – CEO, B&G stated: “Feedback from our customers is really positive, product displays light up a whole section of the store, and sales of the entire range are exceeding expectations.”
Further research shows that consumers are demanding more style and luxury in their bathrooms. The ongoing spread of smart devices requires that the industry responds to the development in this technology: demisters and Bluetooth speakers are only the tip of the iceberg.
*‘Bathroom Market Report – UK 2017-2021 Analysis’ report by AMA Research
Aquablade sets hygiene bar
Ideal Standard’s revolutionary AquaBlade flush technology reaches unprecedented standards of hygiene and provides the excellence in sustainability today’s consumers expect. It builds upon almost 40 years of innovative standards in toilet hygiene, with Ideal Standard having invented the first toilet with no overhanging rim in 1979. With standard toilets, around 20% of the bowl remains un-rinsed after flushing. The patented AquaBlade technology, introduced in 2015, optimises the water flow within the bowl, ensuring significantly better hygiene. AquaBlade employs innovative Microslot technology, whereby a fully glazed channel system guides an unbroken stream of water through two nozzles from the upper rim of the toilet bowl, providing a powerful all-round flush. This results in 100% of the surface beneath the channel being flushed and kept spotlessly clean.
This innovative system, together with its smooth, almost unbroken surface, makes the AquaBlade not only cleaner, but easier to clean, as the flush does the work. The optimal flushing, even at low water volumes, is the most effective use of water possible. It also greatly reduces splashing during the flushing process, in comparison to standard rimless bowls, meaning far less cross-contamination, as fewer bacteria particles are released into the air. In comparison with traditional flush systems, the new technology is also much quieter, with an almost 25% reduction in noise.
Since being introduced to the market, the innovative AquaBlade flush system has won multiple awards for its functional design and advanced technology, including the IF Design Award 2015, the Red Dot Design Award, and the German Design Award, along with multiple awards across the UK too.
AquaBlade® is available across many Ideal Standard bathroom ranges and models. These include wall-hung, back-to-wall and floorstanding bowls, and the Concept, Concept Air and Tesi ranges.
For more information on Ideal Standard, visit: www.ideal-standard.co.uk.