The 2018 Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) is the largest trade show for our industry, attracting more than 700 exhibitors and nearly 60,000 industry professionals. Our Lead Designer, Lyndsey Iannelli & General Manager Chuck Matala attended this year's show. It featured the AuthLux Summit, a panel of experts offering guidance for designing the luxury kitchen of tomorrow today.
The overwhelming reason to invest in a luxury kitchen is that the kitchen not only dramatically impacts the value of the home, today it influences most other design decisions. Realtor.com supports this claim, finding that kitchens are the most important selling feature of a home and that homes listed with a “luxury” kitchen sell faster and command higher pricing than comparable sized homes in the same ZIP code with conventional kitchens.
The AuthLux panelists focused on cabinets, appliances, faucets and sinks. Cabinets set the tone for the kitchen and typically form the basis for all other design decisions. Transitional and modern designs are currently trending among our customers and among the expert panelists. European-styled frameless cabinetry also is a hot trend. Because frameless cabinets do not have a face frame attached to the front of the cabinet, or a center stile in the middle of two cabinet doors, these cabinets provide additional storage space and offer a clean minimalist look.
Organizational tools and storage space are commonplace features of today’s luxury kitchens. Cabinet manufacturers have upped the ante on organizational tools that make it easier to prep and cook food, clean and enjoy the kitchen. Integrated door and drawer lighting, not only improves functionality, it also adds a wow factor.
Smart technology has found its way into luxury kitchens as well. From charging stations that allow multiple phones, tablets and other devices to charge simultaneously without wires to ovens that can talk to Nest’s Learning Thermostat and will ask if it should turn off the oven if it notices that no one is in the kitchen.
There are new counter depth refrigerators with cameras built into door shelves that enable customers to see what is inside and remotely keep tabs on food supplies that are there and those that may need to be restocked. Finishes are becoming more beautiful and functional as well. Black stainless smudgeless finishes on appliances was another popular trend at KBIS.
Luxury kitchens now often feature kitchen workstations that provide storage space, workspace and a range of useful accessories inside the basis for an easy to clean prep zone. The kitchen sink and faucet are the most used appliances in the home, and today’s options for luxury kitchens are almost endless. There are hands free faucets that turn on and off with the wave of a hand, touch faucets, remote controlled faucets, Bluetooth enabled faucets and water filtration faucets to help clients select the best performance and look that meets their needs.