Q&A with ROCA: BCFA Member of the Month

Easter, lockdown easing and the dazzling sun shining – the perfect time to celebrate the next BCFA Member of the Month, Roca. Throughout April, Design Insider will showcase Roca on all of our platforms; we began April 2021 by speaking with Mark Poulain, the Commercial Specification Director at Roca.

Please can you tell our readers about Roca?

Roca started life as a family business and remains so to this day. The company was established in 1917 as a manufacturer of cast iron radiators at its factory in Gavà, near Barcelona. From humble origins, it has now grown into a global business driven by a firm focus on improving the quality of life for its customers. They began producing vitreous china in 1936 and brassware in 1954 and continued to innovate with new designs, products and materials.

Roca is now a world leader in the sanitary ware sector. With a long, established heritage with over 100 years of experience, the brand is recognised as a leading global operator, designing and manufacturing everything in bathrooms. The company’s wide range of innovative products means there is a solution to suit all budgets and projects and our nation-wide team work closely with our customers to provide guidance and achieve the highest standard of quality, no matter the scale of the project.

Can you tell our readers about your new Smart Shower?

Roca has developed the new Smart Shower to revolutionise the daily shower routine. The innovative shower uses smart technology to provide a unique showering experience which can be tailored to the individual user or setting. With complete customisation, ease of use, and sophisticated cleaning and maintenance programmes, the Smart Shower is a beneficial upgrade for any hotel bathroom design.

How does it work?

The Smart Shower is a beautifully intuitive product. It has a sleek, simple interface and allows guests to pre-set their desired shower duration, maximum temperature and flow rates all based on their own individual needs. The interface features a colour LCD display and touch-sensitive controls with soft turn dials to ensure it is extremely easy to use and control. In terms of the overall shower design, the Smart Shower can be installed with a combination of any two or three outlet functions, including our Raindream showerheads, a handset, a bath filler or our Puzzle body jets. 

Is the new Smart Shower in line with Sustainability practices?

Our products are always designed with holistic sustainability in mind, incorporating everything from how they are manufactured in any one of our 84 production plants to how they function. As well as the pre-heat and pause functions for the user, the Smart Shower app helps with energy and water saving, by enabling you to monitor the water and energy consumption and run the shower more efficiently. So, in addition to providing a luxurious showering experience, the intuitive system will actively work to reduce water wastage, making it a sustainable and eco-friendly choice for hotel bathroom designs.

What are the other benefits to the Smart Shower?

For families, the shower is equipped with a child safety mode, so children can only turn the shower off and also allows for the control of flow, temperature and duration to provide peace of mind. This is reinforced by the temperature monitoring system which measures the temperature to eliminate the risk of scalding.

The Smart Shower also includes a Legionella cleaning programme to eliminate bacteria without the use of chemical products and a cleaning programme to clean stains from built up lime and impurities. Another incredibly smart feature is that the shower has the ability to detect and notify you about functionality issues or if there are problems with the installation. This allows for complications to be solved immediately even if they are not related to the shower itself.

How is smart technology impacting bathroom design?

For me personally, I think smart technology is going to have a huge impact on bathroom design and really contribute to hygiene in the bathroom space and our overall well-being. Like many areas of our lives now, one of the key benefits to installing a digital shower is that it can be controlled via an app. This means that users can use a phone or tablet from a bedside to turn on the shower and activate the warm-up function. While in the shower, the control panel allows users to regulate temperature or modify the water flow. Having different customisable profiles means that the shower can be configured exactly to the guest’s liking.

Another area of innovation where Roca is leading the way is our smart toilets. These innovative toilets utilise the latest technology to ensure maximum personal hygiene with water. Roca’s In-Wash is a WC with in-built technology for exceptional personal hygiene that provides complete cleaning, care and comfort, as well as easy installation. The integrated nozzle cleans itself before and after each use and the water flowing through it undergoes a filtering process that treats it before being used. The remote control is extremely intuitive meaning that after just after one operation, the user is able to understand its functioning perfectly. As a complement to the remote control, In-Wash also features a side panel to regulate the basic cleaning and drying functions in a simple and easy way.

The minimalistic design of this product means that the In-Wash will adapt perfectly to the interior of any hotel bathroom space, providing an excellent opportunity to update an existing bathroom.

What does Roca have planned for the future?

After a challenging year for the industry, Roca has continued to strive forward and will have many exciting launches for 2021 with advancing technologies as the main focus. With growing demand for zero contact bathroom solutions, Roca has introduced a new range of thoughtfully designed touchless products to deliver the ultimate in hygiene.

Roca’s Touchless solutions are suitable for commercial use, providing an extra layer of hygiene and safety within the bathroom. Featuring infrared sensors, touchless products allow users to activate the water flow in taps, the flush of the WC or the mirror light using a simple movement without the need for contact, avoiding the spreading of viruses and the growth of bacteria.

The EP-1 and EP-2 electronic operating plates make it possible to activate the toilet flush without any contact. With a stylish, contemporary design and very easy installation, they are automatically activated when moving a hand in front of them, ensuring maximum hygiene and avoiding any contact.

With a backlit surface divided into two stripes which are alternatively activated depending on the type of flush (partial or full), they can be set off by simply bringing the hand closer or by choosing the automatic option in which the toilet is instantly cleaned when the user approaches or when a specific time has passed after its use.

Roca will continue to innovate with its touchless solutions to provide an extra layer of hygiene and safety within every type of commercial bathroom.

The team are also really looking forward to the reopening of our flagship showroom, the Roca London Gallery, as soon as we are able. We’re celebrating the 10 year anniversary of the award-winning Zaha Hadid designed space in the autumn and can’t wait to welcome back specifiers and customers. We’ve added a number of new products featuring the very latest in bathroom innovations to our showroom displays and the gallery will also play host to an exciting programme of activities including exhibitions, talks and architectural tours.

Contact Roca through the BCFA Product Finder.

The BCFA Product Finder is a unique search engine created especially for interior designers to source contract furnishing companies. Utilising this platform will support your findings for upcoming projects, with over 200 members profiles showcasing the latest product launches, new materials available, industry news and design trends.

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About Jess Mockler

Jess is the Marketing and Membership Executive at BCFA and Design Insider. She has a passion for design, marketing and events with a history of working closely with designers in the interior sector after finishing University in Event Management.
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