My Kitchen Update: Looking At Trends With Grohe
When I decided that I was going to revamp my kitchen from dark to light in November last year, one of the most important aspects of the new look was the tap and sink. The kitchen is the busiest room in our home – we spend more time there than anywhere else and I was really keen to get it all right and make sure that I picked products that fitted the way that we lived as a family. I wanted it to feel cosy and welcoming, yet super practical and hardwearing so getting the basics nailed was really important.
One of the items that my husband Joe and I were super keen to incorporate was a hot tap. For years, Joe has lusted after one of these brilliantly timesaving appliances, ever since I had insisted on an Instaworthy stove top kettle that took minimum of ten minutes to boil and let off a shrill whistle that destroyed your eardrums when it was finished. The concept of just being able to press a button for a cup of tea was music to Joe’s battered ears. So when Grohe asked me if I would like to include the Grohe Red hot tap in my new design, I jumped at the chance.
It’s only been installed for a few months but it’s already made the biggest difference to the way that we operate in the kitchen. It’s perfect for hot drinks (especially when you have a nine year old who is addicted to hot chocolate) and ideal for filling the cafetiere if you’ve more than a few to provide for. Another excellent benefit to hot water on demand comes from a cooking perspective – steaming or boiling vegetables is so much easier when you can fill a pan within moments without having to wait for it to boil. Not only is this beneficial timings wise, reducing your prep time by at least five minutes, but it also means that you are using less gas and thus is overall a more sustainable option.
There’s two functions on the tap – one flashes red for manually operated filling (perfect for hot drinks) and the second flashes green for automatic filling (great for preparing pans for cooking). There’s a child lock that means that little fingers can’t get anywhere near it which is a huge bonus for families. From a storage point of view, all that’s needed to make it work is underneath the sink and takes up less than half a standard sized cupboard. You need to make sure that you have an easily accessible plug point and the correct water pressure prior to installing. It took no time whatsoever for my plumber to fit it and we were away. Hot water on demand and no waiting for the kettle to boil. Perfect.
When it came to choosing a sink, I knew exactly what I wanted. My current sink was one and a half bowl and it just didn’t work for me. I knew that a large, square sink would work much better for me. I chose the K700 undermount – sleek, minimal and unfussy, it was perfect for the space and was much more practical for what I used it for. It fitted nicely underneath the quartz worktop and looked great.
Fast forward to March and I was delighted to be asked by Grohe UK to join them on their stand at the ISH Exhibition in Frankfurt a few weeks ago. The ISH is the worlds leading Trade Fair for responsible management of water and energy. It focuses on bathroom design, sustainable heating and technology and is THE place to be to see new trends and ideas coming from leading companies across the globe. Grohe were launching a new product, the Icon 3D tap, the first metal tap from a leading bathroom company to come from a 3D metal printer. The Grohe products filled a Hall and it was so interesting to see developments and ideas from this forward thinking company who focus on sustainable living.
My first port of call was the Grohe Red and Blue taps. Whilst my own tap at home is the Grohe Red tap, there is also a Grohe Blue tap which provides filtered water, both still and sparkling, upon request. The next generation version of these taps is soon to be launched, meaning that you can operate it from your smart phone. Fascinating fact: The average person buys 190 bottles of water a year, which means the average family rack up an astonishing 720 annually. Taking Germany as an example, that’s 16 billion bottles of water bought a year which is equivalent to lorries carrying said bottles from Frankfurt to Tokyo. So by investing in a filtered Grohe Blue tap, you are making a serious difference to the environment. Imagine if we all used tap water rather than bottled water? In an age where sustainability is key, this is the sort of essential information we need to think about.
So what else did I see? Firstly, the product finishes were absolutely gorgeous. From Brushed Cool Sunrise to Warm Sunset, right through to Polished Nickel, there’s a tone to suit your scheme. You can match your sink to your taps to your shower head to your towel rail to give your bathroom a cohesive look in whatever finish you choose. In addition to this, the new Grohe Plus means that you can see the temperature of the water coming from your tap via an LED display and choose the type of jet from a pull out spout for rinsing the sink. All of these features are designed to make the new Grohe products user friendly and flexible for family use.
Another exciting feature that I saw at the Trade Show was the coloured composite kitchen sinks. You can now choose the finish of your sink from a range of beautiful materials and match your other hardware, such as the tap, accordingly. All of these new products are designed not just to be utilitarian and functional but also to look beautiful, taking kitchen design to new levels by enabling you to seamlessly blend your colour choices when you are planning your space.
The final aspect of the Grohe stand that caught my eye was the Essence bathroom range. Grohe offer a full bathroom solution, from taps through to bathtubs, which streamlines the planning of your bathroom. The Essence is the newest range launch and is sleek, simple and beautiful to look at. The style is timeless, an essential factor when deciding on addition to your home that is built to last. It ties in with many of the tap designs so that you can create a space that is really unique.
I really enjoyed spending time with the Grohe team, particularly as they are so enthusiastic about the brand and their place in this ever growing market. They have four core brand values – quality, technology, design and sustainability – and these are reflected in all that they do and the products that they supply. Their high standards are clear to see and I look forward to seeing what they come up with next!