Floors: form versus function
Bold designs, vivid colours and a growing market for alternative flooring at Domotex Middle East 2007.
Featuring 269 exhibitors from 37 countries Domotex Middle East provided commercial interior designers an insight into the very latest flooring trends emerging in the region. The three day event, which took place at the Dubai World Trade Centre last month confirmed that while traditional rugs and carpets remain popular, Europe is continuing to influence trends for wooden floors and boldly designed carpets.
Both international and local companies demonstrated the growing trend for wooden flooring. Alomi launched its new Emirates Wood Collection as well as a range of oak flooring in three different finishes: smoked for an antique look; lacquered and white wash. Naomi Alomi, CEO said: "Wooden flooring, which is a lot warmer than ceramic tiling, is certainly becoming more popular in the Middle East. All of our flooring is scratch-proof and has a top layer of UVA ceramic oxidised lacquer which protects it from the sun when used in entrance halls and near windows."
Other wooden flooring companies included Alloc Domestic which demonstrated its patented aluminum locking system for easy installation. An unusual coloured wooden flooring collection was exhibited by Model Hardwood. The C range, inspired by materials formed over time by the sea and wind, features wood in blue, green and red.
The show also demonstrated the popularity of traditional rugs, on display in the regional pavilions. Miri Iranian Knots exhibited a wide range of traditional hand knotted rugs from different areas in Iran while Jaipur Rug Co. displayed traditional Indian carpets. Yogesh Chaudhary, director, said: "Traditional rugs are still very popular, especially Indian rugs as they are a little more contemporary. Due to the success of the show we are planning to open a store in Dubai."
Although natural carpets were on display, the overall feeling was that colour and bold designs are set to gain in popularity. Swiss manufacturer, Tisca Tiara launched its new Check 4 Stripes collection, designed by textile designer, Caroline Flueler. The four colour range can be combined with either plain or other coloured carpets to produce striking designs for commercial projects. Andreas Tischhauser, marketing manager, Tisca Tiara said: "People are often afraid of colour but it seems to be becoming a more popular choice." The larger carpet companies from the region also exhibited. Laurent Messara, general manager, Messara Carpets, said: "We are constantly launching new products. This year we displayed a new carpet tile and a range of sea grass rugs as well as many brands."
Other highlights of the show included the winning carpets from the Carpet Design Awards. German manufacturers proved to be a popular choice with Floor to Heaven scooping two awards for its wood inspired carpet and Akhavan-Farshtchi Looms of Persia and m³ Concepts also winning.