Monday, 13 June 2016

Milan Design Week: Even More from Eurocucina 2016


Did you think I'd finished spilling on Eurocucina yet? Well no, there is still more to share from the fantastic Italian Kitchen trade show. 


Next up is the pro-kitchen trend. Incorporating commercial cooking elements into our residential kitchens, think lots of stainless steel, plenty of prep areas, lots of easy access storage and integrated removable elements. Veneta Cucine introduced the new Step System across its entire range of kitchens, it’s a panel that joins the base units with the wall units to maximize the use of vertical space and keep often-used items close to hand. TM Italia and Ernestomeda showed pro elements incorporated such as stainless steel finishes, removable prep sections and organiser elements.  Valcucines’ Gourmet System is a semi-professional solution with a steel work surface, concealed storage area and a built-in equipped back section.  If you prefer a more retro look then Abimis may well be right up your street.  All of these fantastic for the wannabe pro-chef in your home, or those with an honest-to-god love of stainless steel.


You might remember on my last Eurocucina post that I was talking about the hidden kitchen trend. Well they don’t come more hidden than that by Marmo Arredo for Offmat, I couldn’t get a decent video of it at the time as the stand was so very crowded but the below is a must see.


Some serious innovation right there, although not yet ready for the residential market, but a tech option that I’m sure we’ll see more of in the future. My thoughts though immediately jump to do we need it though? I mean kitchens need sinks surely?

Which leads me on nicely to my next trend – tecnno kitchen. The halls of Salone del Mobile were packed to the rafters with technology-enabled innovation in the kitchen halls (and in fact they have a whole technology section - FTK). It really seems that the kitchen manufacturers see technology being an ever-increasing part of the future for residential kitchens. There were tech-enabled wonders all over the place (some seen in my video here) sliding cabinets, work surfaces, disappearing/ reappearing elements and even voice activation. It was almost the norm to see retracting countertops at the touch of a button.  Hydraulic/pneumatic lifts that concealed appliances were used to provide cleaner more minimalist looks (seen at TMItalia and Team7). Apps were also getting in on the act too, the one that had me slightly incredulous turned on your oven to the correct temperature. Then there was the actual technology incorporated into appliances; from improving the length of freshness of food seen at Liebherr biofresh, to flush/pitt extraction hoods at bora, invisible hobs and pop up faucets. Nearly every company in FTK showed greener more energy efficient models among their options new to market and my favourite technology focus the quieter appliances – music to my ears! Seen especially at Miele who launched a new generation of dishwashers that were ultra quiet.

In fact Miele went so far as to suggest an invisible kitchen over at their Tortona District installation seen below. If I’m honest I found the whole smart “kitchen of the future” a bit overwhelming - particularly work surfaces that tell me how many calories are in my food. It sounds like torture!


The invisible induction hob at Binova and also seen at Pedini was actually fairly jaw dropping. It looks like a standard marble surface but is actually made of a porcelain material that has a built-in integrated induction cooktop.


Hob innovation really was a big draw.


The most successful technological developments on show were those that simplified daily activities, smart integrated systems and those that were easy to use. Companies like Elica and Franke were incorporating phone charging and USB ports. Watch out, household appliances are becoming seriously intelligent.


While it doesn’t seem particularly ground breaking integrated lighting was huge – it’s not just under the plinth anymore. It was particularly prevalent inside cupboards so at last we will be able to see to the back of cupboards. Many options were automated through sensors. Two of my favourites were a backlit integrated rear panel by Valcucine which adds task lighting to the benchtop as well as a wonderful decorative effect and Nendo for Scavolini Ki collection providing a wonderful accent glow by to the open shelves.  I think this is something that we’ll see in virtual every kitchen soon, as it's something that every client will want - a great balance between necessary and decorative. Its great to see so many companies are now giving careful consideration to lighting in the kitchen environment.


Look no hands! In fact handleless was an obsession, not a handle in sight was often the common view across the multitude of kitchen room sets across the exhibition. This does lend itself well to really clean lines without interruption and for those who prefer a minimalist aesthetic. Miele presented its ArtLine collection including ovens, steam cookers and combination units, which are completely handle- free (seen in Miele video top above). The team at Liebherr also debuted a fantastic wine storage collection that was handless. 


So which trends are you hoping will make it into your home or project? Personally I'm all about the lighting, so that gets a huge thumbs up from me.

To see part 1 and 2 of my EuroCucina 2016 trend report visit here and here.

Image source: hellopeagreen, TMItalia, Valcucine, Arclinea
video source: Milano Design Awards Miele, Trends Ideas, Porcelanosa and Arclinea





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