What’s next in bathrooms? Look to Bologna, Italy, where hundreds of exhibitors and more than 100,000 visitors are set to gather for Cersaie 2019. Showcasing the latest in tile and bath design, the annual expo promises a glimpse into the future of the category. Now in its 37th year, the show continues to be driven by a spirit of innovation. Branded Open Cersaie, this year’s expo goes far beyond the show floor, introducing new opportunities for interactions between visitors and locals as well as fostering a closer relationship with both the concurrent Bologna Design Week and the city itself.
Bathrooms, however, remain the main event. This year’s decidedly unpretentious marquee exhibition riffs on the theme of Famous Bathrooms. Inspired by everyone “from The Beatles to Sigmund Freud,” the exhibit channels the spirit of Open Cersaie as a playful and welcoming complement to the new ceramic surfaces and bathroom furnishings at the heart of the show. Azure will be in Bologna to take in the best of Cersaie 2019. Here’s a preview of five standout product debuts that hint at the evolution of bathrooms.
Inspired by Portuguese Gascoigne stone, the large ceramic slabs that make up the Lithos collection are accented with rich veins of inlaid marble-like streaks. Available in five neutral colourways that range from limestone beige to a dark grey, Lithos anchors any space with quiet drama. Ranging from nine to 20 millimetres in thickness, the versatile tile can be used inside or out. In the bathroom, it makes for a commanding presence – though one that pairs well with a range of fixtures, finishes and surfaces.
The reclaimed wood aesthetic isn’t going anywhere, but it is evolving. With Soul, Ceramiche Piemme introduce a series of finishes that capture the grain and texture of oak parquet. Inspired by the elegant character of a slightly worn floor, Ceramiche Piemme ups its game by introducing a series of eye-catching patterns. With Soul, the refined natural presence of wood is paired with striking geometries to create a new look. It’s a subtle progression from the mere replication of a wood finish, taking full advantage of the versatility of contemporary ceramics.
Many of the most “advanced” shower fixtures are jumbles of knobs and settings that leave the user yearning for the simple turn of a faucet. Not anymore. Thermo Up is a refreshing marriage of aesthetics and expanded functionality. Designed in collaboration with Makio Hasuike & Co, the fixtures introduce a thermostatic mixing valve that sets a precise temperature and water flow while reducing waste. Available in seven finishes, Cristina Rubinetterie’s new fixture promises an ideal shower at the push of a button (okay, two buttons). With a streamlined geometry, it looks good, too.
Designed by Vuesse, Scavolini’s Juno bathroom collection is defined by a sense of aesthetic clarity. Simple silhouettes and clean geometries create a tranquil and well-resolved space. Like all Scavolini bathroom collections, Juno is easy both to customize and to integrate with the extensive range of Scavolini’s washbasins, wall-mounted and floor-standing sanitary ware, taps, shower trays and enclosures.
With STEP, the shower tray takes a rare star turn. Made from a single ceramic block with a thickness of just 28 millimetres, the shower tray combines a luxuriously pared down aesthetic with a user-friendly and environmentally conscious design. Resolving at a flat edge, the durable non-slip surface is highly resistant to abrasion, staining and general wear. What’s more, the industrially produced ceramic reuses all the mixtures and residues from the production process.
Cersaie 2019 takes place September 23 to 27. More information is available via our event listing.
The annual extravaganza kicks off this month in Bologna, offering a glimpse of the future of bathrooms.