There’s no mistaking the glossy Fab Fridges and colourful candy-stripe wall that pops out at you from the front windows of Smeg’s new Melbourne flagship store. Alice Blackwood reports.
April 4th, 2012
There’s a beauty to Smeg’s kitchen collections that makes you forget about work and indulge in your own private visions of a Smeg-style kitchen. And their new flagship showroom in Collingwood, Melbourne, is truly a sight to behold.
While you can find Smeg Australia-wide, they have only two company-owned offices and showroom spaces – in Sydney and now Melbourne. As State Manager for Victoria, Norm Marnie, describes it: “The great thing for us is we now have… our own home and identity [in Victoria] and the floor traffic from consumers has been incredible.”
A fantastic resource for architects and designers, the showroom also caters for the client and consumer as a point of reference.
“Here you can see the entire product range, and there’s less pressure on the consumer here too,” says Marnie. “We don’t sell directly from the showroom, [rather] we try to give guidance and advice.”
Smeg has been long established in Australia, but still remains an Italian-owned brand. Launching in Australia in the early 1980s, Smeg was one of the first companies to introduce European appliances and, in particular, stainless steel products into the local market.
Back then “it was too commercial,” says Marnie, but almost 30 years on the stainless steel aesthetic is definitely popular.
Marnie notes that while Smeg’s products are largely designed for domestic use, they’re highly suitable for commercial applications. A visit to the showroom reveals a plethora of beautiful surfaces and seamless finishes.
Currently on show is the Linear range of cooktops, produced to match Smeg’s premium Linear range of steam ovens, microwaves and more.
Also displayed is the Guido Canali-designed range, an “iconic” Smeg classic that has elegantly adapted from the 1980s to now.
“Aesthetically, it’s remained pretty similar over the years,” says Marnie. But technological advances have seen it take on larger oven capacity, halogen lighting and telescopic rack systems; there’s also a pizza function in the base of the oven, and a vapour cleaning system.
Not to be forgotten is one of Smeg’s latest collections, the cool-as-cult Marc Newson range of ovens and cooktops, available in hues of rich yellow, pistachio green and peacock blue. It’s a range which really embodies Smeg’s distinctive and unique look, while also representing their forward-focused approach to designing kitchens for a global market.
Read the full review of the Smeg showroom in DQ#45, on sale now.
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