Best of Year

Industrial Design Gives Any Space An Artful Edge

A custom Slab-Edge sink in bright pink outfits the Women’s restroom of the Pour House restaurant in Chico, California. Photography courtesy of Neo-Metro. 

Andy Warhol’s factory, the storied site of his creations in the 1960’s, 70’s, and 80’s, is as much a part of the artist’s legacy as his work. The initial Manhattan location, known as the Silver Factory, carries a mythic quality in part due to its no-frills industrial design with exposed beams, untouched floors, and metal pipes. Raw materials such as these continue to influence design trends today. When considering what kinds of contemporary spaces best carry on the legacy of early urban industrial aesthetics, one need look no further than the bathroom.

Neo-Metro, a California-based company established in 1998, has enjoyed a solid reputation as a go-to creator of industrial chic washbasins and toilets for the residential sector. Now, this pioneering brand has branched out into the commercial sector with artful, yet durable offerings. The company also manufactures stainless-steel fixtures, which can be coated with a powder finish to create custom patterns and negative space designs – an increasingly popular option. “We believe the geometric shapes lend themselves to the negative spaces, and it provides some dramatic results,” says Kristin Kahle, VP of Neo-Metro.

Neo-Metro’s 9150 series Slab-Edge® wall mounted washbasin shown at the New Victory Non-Profit Children’s Theater in New York City. Constructed of Corterra recycled solid surface material. Photography courtesy of Neo-Metro.

One of Neo-Metro’s key offerings, though, is its environmentally-friendly and hygienic WEDGE basin, which can be paired with any faucet. The sleek basin creates the illusion of water fading away into an infinite angular space, which eliminates spillage onto the floor and counter. It’s made from post-consumer recycled materials derived from bio-based sources and has a Class A fire rating. “We wanted to offer a sustainable commercial basin that was unlike anything on the market, something that could be viewed as functional art” says Kahle. “We think designers will appreciate the basin’s clean lines, easy installation, and easy maintenance.” 

Neo-Metro’s 9160 series WEDGE™ is a hygienic washbasin system that features a patented triangular wedge design and can be paired with any commercial faucet. Photography courtesy of Neo-Metro. 

The WEDGE Basin is available in 30-inch one-station, 72-inch two-station, and 96-inch three-station configurations, making it a versatile piece for any space. The basin in blanco (white) solid surface is typically stocked and ships within three business days, while other standard colors ship within 3-4 weeks.

Designers also have the option of customizing shape, color, size, and thickness when specifying Neo-Metro’s products, as well as hiding plumbing fixtures and wall-mount supports. These minimalist and modern design details enable the company’s cast resin fixtures, which can include LED lights, to truly shine without distractions. Restaurants and nightclubs often implement the LED lighting feature in the cast resin fixtures, which emanate a soft glow from the translucent material, adding a heightened level of drama and functionality to any dimly-lit space.

Neo-Metro’s 8950-3-HP Metro Urban toilet, the company's most popular product, and 8930-HP Metropolis Basin highlight a NFL bachelor pad in Miami, Florida. Photography courtesy of Neo-Metro. 

Neo-Metro is part of Morris Group International, which has been manufacturing stainless-steel plumbing fixtures for commercial and large-scale projects for more than 70 years. Backed by decades of expertise, the company ensures the quality of its products at every stage – from design and development to installation. Designers looking to specify products benefit from the company’s hands-on approach, since pieces arrive on site ready to be installed by a plumbing contractor with no additional fabrication needed to prepare connections, which saves time and cuts labor costs.

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