Shopping Around | RETAIL

Concept Virtual Design High Street, Maidenhead

Showroom: Service: Total

on the

5 2


This was a substantial two-storey showroom

edge of

Maidenhead’s busy high street with an industrial feel to the building, although the signage was a little dated.

The two window displays, one from Villeroy and Boch and the other from Toto, were very luxurious bathroom concepts that were easy to walk around and beautifully styled, down to the Jo Malone accessories. There was a great selection of Keuco shower heads and taps in the latest finishes. I was only greeted with a cheery ‘hello’ from a designer sitting at his desk in the middle of the showroom, who was in discussions with a supplier. I continued to look around and soon got lost in myriad displays from vanity

Bathe and Beyond London Road, Staines

Showroom: Service: Total

5 4


You’ll find this warehouse-style showroom by the side of a busy dual carriageway. I wasn’t quite quick enough to see the customer car park and had to reroute, but thankfully was successful on my second attempt. It’s a 4,500sq ft showroom that has been skilfully designed and curated with an overwhelming selection of suppliers, including an impressive

selection of Roper Rhodes mirror and cabinet combinations, an Axor shower demonstration unit, as well as a good range from Toto, Keuco, Matki and Geberit among many others. I was greeted by a very welcoming

sales designer, who was sitting behind a desk and was then left to look around by myself.

After a circuit around this very stylish showroom, I chatted to Jacob, who briefly explained their design service and was clearly proud of what the showroom could offer. An über-cool showroom aimed at the mid to high-end customer, displaying a huge range of schemes from the more traditional to the latest on-trend looks that would meet any bathroom brief.

• A modern approach to bathroom design

set-ups, basins and a glamorous sauna cubicle.

I eventually found my way to the

second floor, which was much smaller than I had expected, but had a good range of Grohe taps and showers. This showroom would appeal to a customer with a more substantial budget but frustratingly I didn’t find anything about their design service.

• Impressive showroom Winner’s profile:

Taylor Wright Kitchens, Staines What made this a winner for me was

the quality of customer service. Starting with the warm welcome from owner Kim as soon as I opened the door, to the in-depth discussions about the different designs of kitchen available. His warm, friendly manner and interest didn’t waiver until I left. The showroom itself, although quite small, had an understated elegance and had been thoughtfully laid out, displaying the perfect mix of kitchen styles that would appeal to a wide range of customers. It was clear that Kim was extremely knowledgeable, with a wealth of supplier contacts and was up-to- date with all the latest trends on the market.

This showroom was a great example of how to treat potential customers with care and attention as well as leaving a lasting impression.

Cosi Living Farnham Road, Slough

Showroom: Service: Total

4 3


This double-fronted showroom looked impressive at the end of a parade of shops not far from the Slough Trading Estate.

The window displays made a good impact with a grand contemporary- style kitchen island with bar stools on one side, with an array of Quooker taps and floor tiles on the other. What looked a little out of place was a single

toilet on either side of the window. I had made it nearly to the back of

the showroom before I was asked if I needed help by a designer who was sitting behind quite an imposing desk. He gave me an enthusiastic, but quick, run-down of what they had on offer, from kitchens and bathrooms to carpets and wardrobes. It was a spacious, light showroom and there was an eclectic mix of kitchen and bathroom displays. A bath seemed to have been abandoned at the front of the shop that didn’t appear to be part of a fixed display and it was a surprise to find a discarded hand towel on the floor.

A large showroom aimed at the higher end of the market, but I came away a little confused as to what design service they could offer.

• Has potential

Shopping Around winners from 2020 will automatically make the short-list for our Customer Service categories at the kbbreview Retail & Design Awards 2021. for more details. 2021

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January 2020 · kbbreview


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