As featured in kbbcollective.com
Today (Saturday) has been a very strange day. Many of the show attendees, as well as exhibitors, realize now that they will not be able to go home as planned. Most of Europe is “blocked,” as volcanic ash from Iceland has shut down airports everywhere until further notice.
Nevertheless, the show must go on. Today, the collection of stands I visited included Pedini and Alno, two brands that are well-established in the U. S.; Mobalpa and Torcetti, which are less known in the American market; and two smaller unknown companies on these shores: Kvanum and L’Ottocento.
One of Germany’s better known brands, Alno, along with Wellmann and a handful of other “sister companies,” is part of the Alno Group, which is one of the largest kitchen manufacturers in the world. Nevertheless, the rumor on the show floor was that, like a few other major kitchen players, the company has been experiencing some financial difficulties lately. The recent pull-out of Alno USA from the American market may have been an early sign.
Regardless, Alno still had a very generous-sized stand at Eurocucina this year, which offered one very unusual display: a kitchen shaped like a boat! Let’s hope its boat stays afloat…
By comparison, Pedini is a much smaller company that has grown despite the global recession. Its stand was double the size of that in 2008, and the company has just completed construction on a new factory that will significantly increase its production capacity. It has also added new showrooms around the world, as well as two in the U.S.-one in New York and one in Los Angeles.
In addition to displaying popular models, which have been expanded with new options, colors and finishes,
the stand showed Magika (below), a new budget-driven model.
Torchetti and Mobalpa are two brands that do not exist in the United States (as far as I know), but I wanted to share them with you because both exhibited some unique ideas: Torchetti’s striking design island
and Mobalpa’s concept kitchen, which consisted of an induction cooktop built into a Corian top.
L’Ottocento is a small Italian company that produces more traditional-style kitchens, which I feel, would appeal to American designers both in aesthetics and design ideas.
Kvanum has been the only Swedish manufacturer to ever show at Eurocucina, according to the company. And interestingly enough, it actually has a small showroom in San Francisco. Do its designs look familiar?