What a dazzling night at the Flatiron District in New York City. Still totally overwhelmed by all the new and innovative products and things that are on display at the ICFF, one thinks more news and novelties will create a sensory overload. But not so.At the opening night of the new and first of its kind Kohler Experience Center on 6 West 22nd Street more interest and curiosity ignited.
It all starts with a live-size ceramic chimpanzee group in battle armor standing in the main window of the special showroom. This exhibition space shows our commitment to the arts and invites visitors to participate in the creative endeavor of the new space and our company. The art space is curated by the John Michael Arts Center in Wisconsin and the current exhibition of warrior monkeys is an element of Arts/Industry program alumni Jim Neel’s “Babel” that he created during his first residency in 2008.
The idea of the 10,000 square foot retail space is to give the customers and kitchen and bath design enthusiasts a chance to create moments, use the products and experience everything. The showroom has been designed that visitors can pick up the products and combine them anyway they want. Moving through the room, there are places where these picked and chosen goods can be assembled and combined into mood boards. The combining, the options and the variations are the primary focus for the interactive Experience Center experience.Adding another dimension to the concept of combining products from North America is a section in the store with global products – whether they are from Europe or Asia, they also nicely fit into a new American-style bathroom concept. For example Numi, the ultimate toilet on the market, is such a product that will enlighten any bathroom in any part of the world. The products from different continents and other parts of the world also nicely showcase our global business.
While North America is our birthplace and home, we run very diverse operations on six continents. The Experience Center in New York is the first and one of several Experience Centers showcasing all aspects of our business that will open this year. The others are in London, Bangkok, Singapore, Taipei, Hong Kong, Delhi, and Los Angeles.But what is combining the products and laying them out on the counter, if you don’t know exactly how they work? The Experience Center aims to give the guest the full experience of touching all senses related to the kitchen and bathroom – or should we say showers and water?In the “Spa Experience Room”, an appointment-only space total immersion is desired. Here, you get up close and personal with Real Rain showers and the VibrAcoustic® hydrotherapy. If that is a bit too wet for you and you’d rather prefer the cozy surroundings of the taupe and charcoal colored walls of the showroom, you can experience all things Kohler on the “history walk” through a corridor, gazing at the faucet wall, learning more about our stewardship programs and contemplating the latest ads and videos in the light boxes on the wall.
Wet or dry, one thing is sure – we are convinced – you will leave the Experience Center transformed.
The opening night on Tuesday 23 May was hosted by David Kohler, President and CEO, who led through an evening of entertainment, finger food, drinks, and discoveries. The full house of guest stayed open way past the end of the event to enjoy this new, engaging space.