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The Right Flooring Adds To The Ambience

Julie Dempster, marketing manager at Forbo Flooring Systems, looks at the latest trends in the hospitality and leisure market:

FROM the moment a customer sets foot in a venue, aesthetics shape their experience and flooring is an essential part of that, so it’s important to match the correct product to the environment and atmosphere the client is trying to create.

For example, in budget and mid-range hotels, durable, easily maintained flooring is perfectly acceptable and in keeping with the design standards customers have come to expect. Conversely, in high-end establishments, customers demand a premium experience, so high quality textile products are a more appropriate solution – immediately communicating a sense of sophistication and luxury.

Textiles are well established as the flooring of choice at the top end of the hospitality and leisure industry, where delivering a customer experience with a ‘boutique’ quality is the key – and many clients in this area are seeking flooring products that offer something a little bit different.

Satisfying this desire for differentiation is the trend for custom colouring, where clients are increasingly asking for flooring that matches their exact colour specifications – whether to project a specific brand identity or simply to reflect a particularly stunning shade than runs throughout the styling of their interior fixtures and finishes.

Carpet tiles are also perfect for creating zones within an interior design – a popular and enduring trend throughout the hospitality and leisure sectors. Modular systems make it easy to highlight areas for different uses, creating a smooth transition between a reception and lounge area within a hotel lobby, for example.

Zoning is an effective way of introducing colour to a flooring scheme and 2012 will see an increase in the use of bright textile colour pops to achieve this look. Carpet tiles are also simple to integrate with other modular flooring products where a more practical surface is required, such as in bathrooms or food service areas.

Another textile trend that is increasing is the use of natural fibres such as wool. Creating an unbeatable sense of warmth and indulgence, wool is soft, yet durable and remains one of the most popular choices for luxurious areas in premium hospitality and leisure installations. In addition, carpet tiles made using wool offer an environmentally friendly solution that doesn’t have to come at the expense of aesthetics, key considerations in today’s eco-conscious market.

As a rapidly renewable resource, wool is one of the most sustainable interior finishes available.

Hospitality and leisure clients need to offer their customers the best possible experience to keep them coming back and this is particularly true at the top end of the sector. Interior design details that create a warm and inviting atmosphere are a key part of this and so textile floorcoverings will continue to play a vital role within this sector for some time to come.

This article has been reproduced from the Contract Flooring Journal. You can find them at