At Las Vegas Market, bedding halls burst with new products, brand revamps and exuberant exhibitors
BY BARBARA NELLES AND BETSI ROBINSON
With the U.S economy surging and unemployment at a new low, spirits soared and new products abounded in bustling mattress showrooms at Las Vegas Market Jan. 18-22 at the World Market Center. Certainly, this was the most upbeat bedding show the editors of BedTimes have seen—in close to a decade.
And we spotted some mega-trends at this mega-market:
⇒New year’s makeover. National brands cleaned out their closets and started 2015 with fresh looks and new resolve. Serta revamped Perfect Sleeper, adding a specialty-sleep version to the flagship brand for the first time. Tempur-Pedic shook us up with microcoil-containing Tempur-Flex. A thoroughly modern Posturepedic took center stage in a new Sealy showroom, and Stearns & Foster claimed its own elegant show space for the very first time. Simmons launched its “One Beautyrest” brand strategy that covers 70% of its product portfolio.
⇒ Foam wave. The swelling popularity of foam components in all feels—often with poured gel and other temperature-regulating ingredients, cuts, contours, processes and treatments—cannot be overstated. Period.
⇒Will it adjust? Adjustable-base compatibility was on the tip of every tongue, in every showroom. Even the thickest and weightiest of beds featured newfound adjustable-friendliness.
⇒ Saying yes to UPS. Almost as important as being adjustable-friendly, more vendors offered beds that fit into attractive boxes and travel well. Targeted to Millennials, these all-foam, vacuum-packed and rolled beds have a place both in-store and online, vendors insisted.
⇒For the love of latex. Both Talalay- and Dunlop-process latex came on strong at this show in pillows, comfort layers and cores.
⇒Yarns and fibers at the forefront. Many accessories and mattress fabrics contained viscose yarns that vendors sang the praises of—from “cooling” to “antibacterial.” Merino and other wools, organic cotton and other natural fibers had a strong showing among pillow and quilt fills. Other linens and accessories moved in the opposite direction—think polyester “performance fibers.”
⇒ Pillows proliferate. Clearly, this category grows increasingly complex—driven by customization, temperature regulation, hygiene and “natural” claims. We found new pillows enveloped in filled, multizippered covers holding fiber that wrapped around a crumbled core, allowing consumers to add or subtract fill for adjustability. Molded foam and latex pillows are not out of fashion, but often have a “green” or a “cool” story, too.
And, now, to the specifics—the following is a sampling of what exhibitors unleashed in bedding showrooms at Las Vegas Market.
Sommex Bedding Corp. / Natura—The new Natura Sensational collection, manufactured by Sommex Bedding Corp. in Laval, Quebec, delivers a “slower response, more ‘gooey’ feel and superior climate control,” said Valerie Stranix, chief marketing officer (pictured on a Sensational model). The three-bed group retails from $2,799 to $3,999 with Talalay latex at the core topped with pure wool, renewable content and ActiveFusion latex imbued with phase-change material. The company took a new angle on the bed’s sleek borders, using the brand’s traditional cream and moss-green fabrics.
Paramount Sleep—At the Cosmopolitan hotel, Paramount Sleep tested its first beds manufactured under a joint-venture arrangement with ultra-premium U.K. bed brand Hypnos. Paramount sought dealer reaction to the Baroness, Countess and Monarch collections, each with coordinating divan bases, headboards and accessories. A hard launch will follow at the spring High Point Market, the Norfolk, Virginia-based company said. The Hypnos brand has “a sustainability story” and uses the Q Spring zoned pocketed-spring system, New Zealand wool, Hevea Flex natural latex and horse hair, and other premium components and construction techniques.
Glideaway introduced a host of mattresses, adjustable bases, frames and more, including new hybrid beds in the Sleepharmony Intuition collection; the group retails from $799 to $1,299. New Savvy Sides (pictured) decorative, clip-on rails for metal bed frames retail for about $99. The sturdy, easy-to-ship Strongstyle KD metal platform base with fabric cover retails for about $199. The St. Louis-based company added four adjustable bases. Most notably, the opening model Prelude ($799) has a “split deck” for quick assembly and comes in a compact package for easier shipping. And high-end Elevate ($2,000) is feature-laden with a new tilt function that angles the head up, while keeping the sleep surface flat.