Symmons Blog

4 Movements to Look for in 2018 Commercial Property Design

4 movements to look for in 2018 commercial property design

Symmons Design Consultant Jill Sampson Decker has helped numerous commercial property clients stay ahead of commercial design trends even as they maneuver challenging plumbing decisions. Here are Jill’s observations of commercial design trends you should keep an eye out for in your 2018 projects.

Designing for the Multifamily Micro-unit

If your portfolio includes Multifamily projects, be prepared to recommend fixtures and accessories to your owner and developer clients working on properties that feature “micro-units.” Also synonymous with other industry buzzwords such as “tiny living” and “micro-housing,” the micro-unit apartment or condominium is designed for both affordability and an efficient construction process.

When specifying lavatory faucets and tub/shower systems for a micro-unit, the Dia® Duro® Configurator can help you create the ideal configuration to meet your owner/developer’s requirement for reduced square footage. With the Dia Duro Configurator, you can, for example:

Symmons Dia Duro Configurator Design Trends

  • Select and see product image previews of your preferred items from the Dia or Duro Collections
  • Configure your Dia or Duro lavatory faucet to suit your client’s preferred functionality (e.g., single handle versus widespread lavatory faucet configuration, etc.)
  • Refine your Dia or Duro lavatory faucet design by changing the faucet’s spout height and handle shape
  • Perfect your Dia or Duro tub/shower system setup by specifying a showerhead and tub spout in the design of your choice

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When you are satisfied with your configurations, you can download a PDF file with your exact specifications to share with your client and team.


The Downsizing of the Hotel Bathroom—Without Sacrificing Amenities

Hotel bathrooms are shrinking to make way for increased guest room living space. However, this poses a challenge for hotel owners and developers who want to continue to offer as many bathroom amenities as possible to please future guests. Help your clients maximize limited guest bathroom square footage by specifying accessories such as:


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  • The Glass Mounted Robe Hook, shown here in Polished Chrome, which adds much-needed storage and functionality to the shower wall
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The Exploration of Color Palettes, Materials, and Finishes 

Jill guides her clients to find new ways to think about color, building materials, and finishes to realize a desired look. For example, plumbing fixtures in Brushed Bronze are the perfect complement to rich earth and wood tone color palettes, as well as contemporary aesthetics with a traditional touch.


The Dia Two Handle Lavatory Faucet in Brushed Bronze adds a showpiece element into a space with a more antique or classic design aesthetic.

Jill’s has clients dreaming up new possibilities and leveraging Symmons Design Studio™ to mix plumbing fixture finishes and materials, such as:

  • Specifying lavatory faucets and showers in one finish (e.g., Copper) and accessories in another finish (e.g., Matte Black)
  • Combining multiple finishes into one plumbing fixture—learn examples from Symmons Design Consultant Lisa Coté-McKain’s from her client experiences here
  • Integrating non-metal materials, such as wood, into a plumbing fixture

Overall, Jill is finding that her clients’ color palettes are becoming more subdued in favor of introducing pops of color with navy, emerald, and the 2018 Pantone® Color of the Year, Ultra Violet.


Matte Black Is Trending, but Also Consider Polished Graphite

You may have noticed from your scrolling through your Instagram feed that Matte Black is everywhere—cars, graphics, jewelry, interior design, and more. Symmons has introduced popular products from our Dia® and Duro® Collections in Matte Black so that you can keep your upcoming projects on-trend. Jill’s Multifamily clients are excited to feature Matte Black plumbing fixtures in their units to appeal to their Millennial and Centennial residents. Similarly, her Hospitality clients wanting to achieve the luxury boutique hotel experience for their guests are utilizing Matte Black fixtures to add depth to spaces where color palettes are more muted.

“Matte Black is a dynamic finish. It works well with a number of different materials and color palettes, adding a touch of sophistication or edginess… a jewel that stands out among other neutrals.”

– Jill Sampson Decker, Symmons Design Consultant

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The Duro® Single Handle Lavatory FaucetDuro Towel Holder, and Duro Towel Bar take on a bold, striking look in the Matte Black finish. 

However, for your commercial property clients who want more choices for deep, dark metal finishes in addition to Matte Black, provide them with the option of finishing plumbing fixtures and accessories in Polished Graphite.


The Museo® Two Handle Widespread Lavatory FaucetsMuseo Tub/Shower SystemMuseo Hand Towel Holder, and Museo Double Robe Hook finished in Polished Graphite bring together the minimalist aesthetic of this hotel guest bathroom. 

Do you have a project following some of the design movements discussed here? Be sure to assemble your team of plumbing experts in advance to help provide your clients the best and most innovative solutions possible. Schedule a consultation with a Symmons Design Consultant today.


About Jill Sampson Decker, Symmons Design Consultant

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Jill Sampson Decker holds a Bachelor of Arts in Interior Design from Washington State University. She moved from Washington state to Chicago in 2009 and has been servicing Symmons’ clients throughout North America since November 2014 in her role as a Design Consultant. Her client portfolio runs the gamut from boutique/niche downtown hotels to luxury resorts and spas. Jill draws her design inspiration from fashion trends, which tend to coincide with or precede interior design trends, along with company branding and graphic design. When not working on client projects, Jill enjoys reminiscing about Washington wine country while spending time with both her chocolate lab Goose and partner in life whom she married in November 2017.

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