| Simone Andrea Mayer |
COLOGNE (dpa) – Home-appliance designers have been busy improving the look of kitchen hoods over the past few years and have managed to turn a rather functional device into something quite beautiful.
Some models look like very stylish light fittings while others have a flat-screen television appearance
Such models are built at an angle to the cooker, allowing more space and a better view of cooking pots, according to Stefan Kinkel, executive director at the German kitchen appliance maker Neff.
“A growing trend is the ceiling kitchen hood,” he says. Ceiling extractors are hardly visible to the eye and are more like a built-in light source above the cooker than a kitchen hood.
Latest designs shown at the recent IMM Cologne International Interiors Show offer a foretaste of what European manufacturers are likely to be exporting worldwide soon for high-end kitchens.
Most of the new models had a more domestic look than the sterile steel hoods we have been used to. Constructa had a design made from glass instead of steel, giving the hood a very light and classy appearance.
Kitchen appliance maker Refsta had a model that looked like a golden lampshade. However, the “lampshade” had a number of special functions to offer: its plasmaNorm model not only removes cooking fumes from the air, it also extracts fine particles, tobacco smoke and cleaning solvent fumes too.
Other manufacturers had models on display that were hardly noticeable.
Berbel’s Moveline hood is only visible during cooking after rising from the worktop behind the hob. Miele’s built-in hoods have a depth of a mere 30 centimetres, making them easy to install in a cupboard above a cooker.
Bosch has added two new designs to its line that include sensors that monitor the cooking fumes’ intensity and automatically adjust the extraction speed to suit. That helps reduce energy costs.
Gaggenau and Miele have also gone down the road of greater efficiency and have dozens of models that fulfil strict European energy codes.
“Of course (energy efficiency) is mainly a marketing instrument for retailers,” says Kirk Mangels from Germany’s trade association for the kitchen industry, AMK. Energy efficient hoods have the same performance as older models, but use less power.
However, don’t expect to make huge savings by buying one.