The Water Studio opened in March and is situated at 12-16 Clerkenwell Road in London. It showcases over 200 bathroom products by the Hansgrohe and Axor brands alongside four running water stations demonstrating how the products work.
"From very early on in the project, we didn't want this to become an archetypal manufacturer's showroom," explains Mongan, managing director of Hansgrohe in the UK. "This was about creating an experience."
Grohe, Hansgrohe's vice president of design management, says it was important to create a space where people could experience how different taps and mixers feel under the hand.
"We work with some of the best designers in the world," he says. "A mixer is something you touch typically between 10 and 40 times a day. You can have a good feeling 40 times a day or a not so good feeling 40 times a day."
The Water Studio features a testing station demonstrating how different products behave with different water pressures and how water-saving features affect consumption.
"The functional test rig allows people to understand how different shower heads or taps perform under different conditions," Mongan explains. "Customers can compare two products side-by-side."
The Water Studio also includes workshop spaces to host CPD (continuing professional development) seminars for architects. Mongan says the proliferation of architecture practices in Clerkenwell was a key reason for choosing the area.
"Clerkenwell has the highest concentration of architects and designer practices globally," he explains. "It is a place where like-minded brands come to talk to that community and help them specify products."
Grohe says that, as an international city, London itself was a big draw for the German brand.
"Through a city like London we have a reach into the world," he explains. "Architects and designers based in London go to Asia, to the United States, or through Europe into the Middle East. So here we are very close to the highest level of this community worldwide, and that's a good place to be."
This movie was filmed by Dezeen in London for Hansgrohe.