Its been a busy few months for Kohler Co. with the commencement of our global Kohler Experience Centre (known as KEC) rollout in strategic locations around the world.
The first KEC to launch – and the perfect location for any flagship store – was in New York in June. Occupying a 10,000 foot space, the New York KEC is divided into a series of stunning kitchen and bathroom vignettes.
Not to be outdone, Europe launched it’s own flagship KEC in London in the design hub of Clerkenwell with it’s own collection of sumptuous suites and experiential displays.
Closer to home, the latest KEC to open its doors was KEC New Delhi – a hub which is now becoming one of Kohler’s fastest growing markets – according to David Kohler, President and CEO who also attended the opening.
Kohler CEO and President David Kohler at Delhi KEC opening
The New Delhi 10,000 sq ft retail concept space was designed by local firm Studio Lotus and is spread over 2 floors and 4 distinct zones – Café, Inspiration Zone, Warehouse and Lab.
As its name suggests, the Cafe – sporting a Kohler kitchen of course – offers the perfect meeting place for consultants, architects, designer and retail customers meeting to discuss their need for each individual project.
The Warehouse is an area that showcases the product range with a modular space for customers to select products for
their projects while highlighting the strength of the KOHLER portfolio.
Artist Edition basins adorn the walls and countertops
The Lab is an area that highlights Kohler’s journey of product innovation and performance stories. This space
features interactive, live product displays offering an immersive experience to KEC visitors.
A vast array of showering options zone in the Lab.
The Inspiration Zone features the work of seven key Indian architecture firms. Each suite or space represents their
creative interpretation of what a bathroom can look like – ranging from Zen bathrooms featuring Japanese minimalism to
bathrooms blending old world elegance with new age technology in a monochromatic palette of black and white.
An bathroom suite designed by featured architects in the Inspiration Zone
Some bathroom inspiration for visitors in the Inspiration Zone”Our KOHLER Experience Centers signify a paradigm shift in our retail experience globally. With the launch of the
KOHLER Experience Centre in New Delhi we are elevating our retail experience allowing end consumers, architects and
designers to have an interactive and immersive experience with KOHLER’s global range of products,” said David Kohler,
President and Chief Executive Officer of KOHLER Co.
A Purist and Derring Wading Pool Basin feature in just one of the many suite vignettes on display
The Experience Centre houses fully-functioning displays of KOHLER’s global product lines, including basins, tapware,
showers, baths and toilets. The KEC is the first of its kind for both the bathroom industry and for the KOHLER brand in India. This experiential space will enable architects, design professionals and consumers to trial and specify KOHLER products all under one roof.
And of course, each KEC features it’s own unique art exhibition. KEC Delhi features the work of visionary designers Sahil and Sarthak who created the art installation “Kalpataru – The Wishing Tree” signifying customs associated with the Hindu Festival of Lights. The sculpture was unveiled during the KEC Delhi opening.
Art installation by designers Sahil and Sarthak named “Kalpataru – The Wishing Tree”
To read more about the KEC New York opening – click here.
To read more about the KEC London opening – click here.
Following hot on the heels of the opening of KOHLER’s inaugural Experience Centre in New York City, the very next day a European Kohler Experience Centre opened in the London suburb of Clerkenwell – one of the city’s renowned creative hubs.
After the incredible success of the opening of the KOHLER Experience Centre in New York City the day before, it made perfect sense to show the architects and designers on the old continent the latest products and services in the new KOHLER Experience Centre in London (KEC LON) – a showroom operated in partnership with West One Bathrooms Ltd. European’s leading bathroom retailer.
The new Kohler Experience Centre in London
The event was hosted by David Kohler, President and CEO, who flew over directly from New York. The event corresponded with the Clerkenwell Design Week, held 23-25 May, and hosts around 35,000 visitors to the this design neighborhood – looking for best designs from around the world.
The KEC LON taxi!
In the KEC, visitors can experience products close up and personal and immerse themselves into the world of Kohler. The centre shares information on all aspects of the KOHLER business including our other brands such as KALLISTA – for luxury and premium bathroom designs – as well as our stewardship and art programs.
The first European KEC showcases innovative products such as Real Rain, the latest Artist Editions Shagreen basins, the advanced technology of the DTV+ shower system, the new Modern Life suites and Veil Intelligent Toilets.
Kohler’s new Shagreen basins and new baths on display
In addition, the new KOHLER global specification service has been launched, providing instantaneous, hands-on access to all products across our entire portfolio.
In a dedicated art space, a piece of the Bold. Art. exhibition 2014-2016 is displayed. “Love” by the Korean artist Yang Younghoe is part of the Arts/Industry program that we run in the US and Asia and features at the London Experience Centre.
The Bold Art installation – “Love” – by the Korean artist Yang Younghoe
By visiting the new KEC in London, customers can gain a more intimate understanding of our products and services and develop a deeper knowledge and insights of the brand.
About the area
Clerkenwell Road – between King’s Cross and the City of London – was constructed around the same time that KOHLER was founded. The initial purpose of the road was to link the east and west of the city.
The neighborhood has developed from a monastic settlement (long before the road existed) through darker times of crimes to an area in Central London where one finds more hedonistic, creative businesses and number of architects per square meter than anywhere else in the world.
The design district is these days more alive than ever, although the atmosphere is creative and artsy all year around with more than 80 world renowned design brands, more than 200 architects, tons of restaurants, and bars in the neighborhood.
44-48 Clerkenwell Road where the showroom is located is a building with a long history. It was built in 1886 as a warehouse for the printers Gilbert & Rivington by the architect W. Seckham Witherington. In the early years of the 20th century it was turned into a factory for Elis Korn, a jeweler and watchmaker, who had the place refurbished by the architect W. Ernest Jefferis.
The building that is close to Farringdon station – rumored to be the oldest underground metro line in the world – has long served London’s creative industry.