“Kitchens are used for much more than just cooking,” says Diahann Young, director of innovation and new product development. “Families with children think of their kitchen as the center of their home life while boomers are focused on entertaining, and some young millennials are more and more about eating on the run. Consumers are even concerned about how Fido fits in their space. All of these groups require and value different layout configurations and products.”
The Company recently kicked off its Kitchen of the Future project by holding the first-ever Kitchen Throwdown event, a collaboration effort of more than 20 manufacturing supplier partners to build kitchens based not only on buyer demographics, but on a specific consumer’s lifestyle, such as the foodie or the grab-and-go chef.
Six teams comprising of cabinets, appliances, flooring, lighting, sinks, faucets, countertops and backsplash, designed and built unique kitchen vignettes at PulteGroup’s Innovation Center, a 52,000-square-foot research facility where the Company prototypes new floorplans before it’s introduced to the marketplace.
“The Throwdown jumpstarted our new lifestyle kitchen designs in a fun and engaging way that leveraged our supplier insights and consumer trends,” added Young. “From construction to final presentation, these six lifestyle kitchens exemplified the essence of forward thinking, innovation and personalization that addressed consumers’ wants and needs in a kitchen.”
According to Young, the Throwdown Event is just one key piece in developing new designs and elements to support the creation of differentiated, consumer-preferred kitchens. Based on the suppliers' presentations, the PulteGroup team is further exploring consumer lifestyles and behaviors and brainstorming ways a kitchen can be better designed to minimize pain points for the consumer. After the presentations, consumers walked through and provided immediate feedback on the kitchen vignettes, which will allow the Company to refine the designs before they're debuted – targeted sometime in the first half of 2016.
PulteGroup Partners with Leading Supplier Manufacturers
“To achieve the high level of quality our homeowners demand, we select industry leaders with a long track record of excellence,” says Kellee Hansen, director for procurement of PulteGroup. “Our partners have a deep understanding of design trends and consumer segments, and it was exciting to see them partner together to create kitchens that are sure to please the discerning homebuyer.”
The products used in the kitchens included appliances from Bertazzoni, Bosch, Electrolux, GE, Subzero-Wolf, and Whirlpool; cabinets from ACPI-Echelon, Legacy, Masterbrand, Timberlake, and Wellborn; countertops from Cosentino and Dal Tile Slab; flooring from Armstrong, Emser, Mannington, Mohawk and Shaw; backsplash from Dal Tile and Emser; Lighting from Kichler and SeaGull Lighting; and sinks and faucets from Kohler and Moen.
New Home Product Trends
From motion sensor faucets to Ferrari red stovetops, there were plenty of impressive new home products. General Electric showcased a modern fridge that features a hot/cold water filter with a Keurig. Kichler Lighting showed off its LED tape for toe kicks and under cabinet lighting in several of the kitchens. And Bertazonni debuted its new suite of appliances in North America.
For more information or to access photography and video about PulteGroup’s Kitchen Throwdown, visit newsroom.pultegroup.com.
About PulteGroup, Inc.
PulteGroup, Inc. (NYSE: PHM), based in Atlanta, Georgia, is one of America’s largest homebuilding companies with operations in approximately 50 markets throughout the country. Through its brand portfolio that includes Centex, Pulte Homes, Del Webb and DiVosta Homes, the company is one of the industry’s most versatile homebuilders able to meet the needs of multiple buyer groups and respond to changing consumer demand. PulteGroup conducts extensive research to provide homebuyers with innovative solutions and consumer inspired homes and communities to make lives better.
For more information about PulteGroup, Inc. and PulteGroup brands, go to pultegroupinc.com; www.pulte.com; www.centex.com; www.delwebb.com and www.divosta.com. Follow PulteGroup, Inc. on Twitter: @PulteGroupNews.