NEWH - Winter 2012 - (Page 40)

Cover Story ng t ki o in rfo th e Re nd U d ahea tions ep ne st oring op o u s hin stays red o lly H y Ke an B de pi Karn ature-ins n with arpet and stone may still strike many as the workhorses of hospitality flooring, but in recent years, another material has become a frontline player—and it’s not made of fluffy fibers or hard ceramic. Luxury vinyl tile (or LVT) has been on hospitality’s radar for many years, but with a recent push to in ltrate the market in the states, Karndean is asking designers to reexamine LVT and its viability as a durable, attractive, and long-lasting ooring solution. According to Ed Perrin, CEO of Karndean Design ooring USA, U.S. designers are doing just that, and the reason is the company’s persistent dedication to design. “We consider ourselves a design ooring manufacturer,” says Perrin. Karndean, founded in the UK in 1976, models all its products after what they nd in nature. It can take upwards of three years to develop and launch a collection after discovering a material the design team wants to emulate: high-de nition photographs are taken, interpreted as a ooring design, and then manufactured into a vinyl tile or C plank. e lengthy development process, typical in most high-tech manufacturing, means Karndean must be far ahead of the trend curve in order to o er products the market will want before it knew it wanted them. “Our design team is able to spot trends in advance,” explains Perrin. “When, for example, long or wide plank became on trend [in ooring], we had already developed that. We [also] talk to architects, designers, speci ers…we’re very good at developing.” Current trends in LVT point to wider format tile planks and striated designs, like the new striated planks Karndean is launching as part of its Opus collection. “You can put six planks on the oor, then another six planks next to them but turn them ninety degrees so it looks like a very large format striated tile, which we believe will be very popular in hospitality spaces in foyers and entrances,” he says. Karndean has distinguished its brand abroad over the past few decades, in ltrating Australia and New Zealand in the mid ’80s, Europe in the mid ’90s, and now the U.S. e company’s commitment to design excellence allowed it to see success in markets like Europe that were more receptive to vinyl, says Perrin. In contrast, vinyl has met some debate in the U.S., as lobbying groups have tried to persuade the 40

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of NEWH - Winter 2012

NEWH - Winter 2012
Who’s Who
Conference Roundup
Sustainability: Point of View
Q&A: Cynthia Millow
Q&A: Lisa Ghai
Have You Seen?
Product Know How
On the Scene
On the Cover
Project: Hilton and Marriott Prototypes for Latin America
New Members
Project: Lodge at Sonoma Renaissance Resort & Spa
Save the Date
Partner Profies
Ad Index

NEWH - Winter 2012