Kitchens come in every shape and style, so a showroom built with kitchens in mind needs to have a lot of space or be creative with its displays. The Design Studio by Raymond in Naples, Fla., is both, with six kitchen vignettes, including an outdoor kitchen and a fully functional demonstration kitchen.
The showroom was designed to evoke a contemporary feel; large blue-tinted windows provide natural light and pair with muted design features. See-through stools and chairs on the main floor between the different displays add to the sense of openness.
Each of the six vignettes contains a variety of products and design styles in the hopes that customers will find their personal style among the selection.
Vice President of Operations James Martin says that the showroom was designed to not only showcase the products and styles, but also to emphasize the company’s “expertise in quality, high-end cabinetry, appliances, doors, and windows.”
Design Studio by Raymond features products from numerous manufacturers, and being located in Florida, has a specific section catering to storm protection options. The showroom also features centers for millwork, doors, and hardware so customers can learn about the latest in home design.
When designing the showroom, the exterior façade was given just as much thought as the interior. “Similar to a monument, those driving by may consider the building a piece of art for discussion, as well as view the products and vignettes through the large windows,” says Martin.
The judges noticed the effort put into making the outside just as appealing as the inside. “They’ve taken a big old, hot, sweaty lumberyard, and they make it look good,” said judge Chris Rader.
“I think down in that area anyways, it’s real airy and breezy and bright,” added judge Deanna Jenkins.
The fact that the showroom is its own unique structure as opposed to being attached to a lumberyard was a draw for some of the judges, including Mike Kauchak, who feels that customers appreciate the stand-alone space.
“Customers want to be taken to a special place,” Kauchak said during the judging, “and not [be] next to the dirt and muck.”
At two stories and 8,500 square feet, the showroom’s utility goes beyond just showing off products. With a functioning kitchen, the floor plan of the showroom allows it to serve as a meeting space for community groups. The company also hosts vendor-specific events and continuing education classes for designers and architects in the space.
The renovation was completed in 2014, and the showroom opened in August of that year.