01__How did the idea for Suite come about, and how did you manage to turn an idea into an actual product?
The concept for Suite came to us when the expression of a need encountered an idea of a solution.
We had been aware for some time of an increasingly strong trend among design studios specialising in hotel contract work of opting for integrated solutions for the bathrooms in top hotels: matching and coordinating the shower enclosures with the doors leading into the area of sanitary ware or other utility areas. And then, one time I was having a chat with Sergio Castiglia and he mentioned his interest in finding an architectural solution for this demand. This combination of ideas gave us Suite, the expression of our know-how in the design of shower units, along with all the problems associated with the seal and the durability of materials used in wet rooms, combined with the sensitive design approach of Castiglia Associati, a team that has a lot of experience in definition of doors and furniture solutions.
02__How would you describe the main features of the Suite project?
Flexible, versatile, unique.
In technical terms, Suite is made up of large sheets of glass enclosed by an extremely linear frame. In order to guarantee the availability of large sizes in terms of width and height, 10 mm thick monolithic glass can be used or alternatively 4+4 laminated safety glass. This second option may appear to be a predominantly technical solution, but it actually adds to the incredible versatility of Suite’s aesthetic potential because laminated glass can be made with endless combinations of different glasses, and plastic interlayers containing metal mesh or other precious materials can also be added. As a result, there is endless potential for customisation.
It is made to measure; from small 110 cm niches to larger areas that are more than 4 metres wide. In terms of height, we set ourselves the limit of 270 cm. The beauty of Suite is that it does not need securing to the ceiling: this means there is no need to plan each individual element down to the millimetre in order to accommodate the irregularities you usually have in any ceiling. There is a system of profiles you can use to close the gap above the frame if you want a totally enclosed look.
Another interesting feature is that the doors open 180° towards the outside, so that they can be folded completely back against the fixed panel and take up less space.
03__Which materials were chosen for the system?
Suite is made up of aluminium profiles and glass sheets.
The profiles are extruded from primary aluminium alloy. The walls are framed by a linear system of profiles available in 12 different versions that can be combined with one another in order to compensate for any irregularities in the masonry walls and correct any imprecisions (walls out of plumb or uneven floors).
All the adjustments are made on the inside of the walls so that the outside of this “frame” remains clean and untouched.
There are two different types of glass: 10 mm thick monolithic tempered safety glass or laminated safety glass (SECURPLUS) made by putting two 4 mm thick sheets together.
The metal or plastic parts are all made using moulds designed by us, and always have the same finish as the rest of the wall system.