KOHLER, WIS. — Kohler Co.’s sok overflowing bath and laminar-flow bath filler received Gold and Silver Industrial Design Excellence Awards, respectively, from the Industrial Designers Society of America.
Awarded in July at IDSA’s national conference in Monterey, Calif., the home spa bathing products from Kohler were chosen from more than 1,100 entrants from 16 different countries.
Co-sponsored by the IDSA and Business Week magazine to recognize excellence in design, the annual international competition spans 11 different categories, from business equipment and new car designs to home furnishings and medical devices.
This year’s winners were selected by a jury of 16 non-affiliated designers, choosing winners based on performance in five different aspects of design, including benefit to the user, benefit to the client/business, design innovation, ecological responsibility, and aesthetics and appeal.
“The sok bath and laminar-flow bath filler are terrific successes for our company in a variety of ways,” said David Kohler, group president/Kitchen and Bath for Kohler. “Both projects combined unique consumer insight with excellent design and technical execution to produce products that consumers around the globe are excited about.
Designed to create a more relaxing bathing experience, sok has touched consumers both experientially and aesthetically. It is the essence of what we strive to attain at Kohler.”
The sok tub offers a deep-soaking experience for bathers reclining in chin-high warm water. The bather is at eye level with a plane of water that drops off the rim’s horizon, while air jets generate bubbles that cling to the body.
The 75-in. long acrylic tub with a 24.5-in. deep basin maintains a consistent water height and temperature. A sheet of bath water continuously spills over the tub’s rim into a water channel and is recirculated back into the tub. A 1.5-kW heater warms the water and a 1/3-hp, 230-volt pump sends the water through 11 air jets to create the effervescent bubbles.
The bath’s outside walls can be finished in tile, stone, wood, concrete and other materials to match the bathroom’s color scheme. The tub is available in white, almond or biscuit and features a raised, molded-in seat that provides for comfortable support and natural leg extension.
Having originally launched sok in May 2001, Kohler unveiled a new wrinkle in 2002 for consumers by unveiling chromatherapy (light therapy) to its bath.
The chromatherapy features eight hues that are sequentially transmitted via four LED light ports positioned in the inner walls of the bath. A touch of the button starts the color sequence, displaying each approximately eight seconds. If the bather finds a color to their liking, a touch of the button will hold that color indefinitely.
The Silver IDEA awarded laminar-flow bath filler projects an intact stream of clear water, providing a visually arresting and physically soothing experience. Kohler laminar technology essentially “straightens” the water by eliminating the turbulence and removing the air normally caused by the bends of pipes. The laminar-flow bath fillers can be mounted to the floor, wall or ceiling and can be specified in a variety of Kohler trim finishes, including polished chrome, brushed chrome, vibrant polished brass, vibrant polished nickel, vibrant brushed nickel and vibrant French gold.