Las Vegas, known for its vibrant energy and as a hub of entertainment, recently played host to one of the most anticipated events in the world of flooring, design, and surfaces – the Surfaces Convention 2024. This year’s convention, held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, was a dazzling display of innovation, technology, and design trends that are set to shape the future of the industry.
Innovations and Highlights
Cutting-Edge Products and Technologies
One of the highlights of the Surfaces Convention was the unveiling of new products and technologies. Industry leaders showcased a range of items from eco-friendly flooring solutions to technical improvements in structure. The use of recycled materials and sustainable practices was a recurring theme, highlighting the industry’s commitment to environmental responsibility and protecting end users from health hazards.
Attendees had the opportunity to experience products first-hand through interactive demonstrations. These sessions allowed for a deeper understanding of the functionality and potential applications of new products, offering a tangible glimpse into the future of surface design.
The biggest buzzword I noticed at this event was PVC-Free. Many products intros such as Cork Flooring, Hardwood, and Laminate are marketing this new core design. My personal prediction, after visiting this event, is that Laminate flooring will be making a huge comeback on the resilient flooring sector. Laminate has been losing to LVP for 5+ years, but we will likely see the beginning of a reversal this year. This new generation of Laminate flooring blends advancements in visual and texture with a new and improved water resilient core which can last up to 500 hours in standing water. After investigating (and more interrogating) I found out what caused many laminate floors of the past era to perform poorly when exposed to water and what is the difference in the manufacturing process of new-age laminate. New laminate technology uses a higher degree of compression and increased the amount of bonding adhesives to reduce the speed this HDF core will absorb water.
Color and Texture
This year’s convention put a spotlight on bold colors and textures. From vibrant hues to subtle pastels, the range was impressive, catering to a variety of tastes and design aesthetics. Textures also took center stage, with innovative techniques used to create surfaces that are not only visually appealing but also tactile. Many options such as moss walls and wood cladding are now introduced through traditional flooring and paneling brands to enhance their product offers and woo designers and architects whom are often making product selections for high-end homes. These products are supplemental to the flooring industry but it adds exceptional value to a room’s overall feel when implemented correctly.
Sustainable and Functional Design
Sustainability continued to be a key focus, with numerous exhibitors showcasing products made from renewable resources. The industry’s shift towards eco-friendly design was evident, emphasizing functionality without compromising on style. Moving forward, biodegradable materials and low-off gassing are set to be key factors in product development. Look for global certifications such as Green Guard and Carb 2 Compliance.
One of the most valuable aspects of the Surfaces Convention was the opportunity for networking. Industry professionals from around the globe came together to share ideas, forge partnerships, and discuss future collaborations. The event served as a melting pot of creativity and business, fostering connections that may shape the future of the industry from Manufacturing to Retail. It was especially valuable to me to finally meet some of our partners and suppliers to strength our relationships, provide feedback, and build new strategies to bring to my home market in Minnesota.
Stand outs in this include RIVA Spain which Unique Wood Floors is now one of a dozen key dealers in the United States. This partnership allows dealers such as Unique Wood Floors to leverage our expertise and volume to provide the best combination of quality, value, and service to the end user. My company does this by providing direct feedback to the manufacturer, leveraging our knowledge of the US and local MN markets. The RIVA Spain brand is a true trend setter in the industry with this new direct-to-dealer partnership model and stunning, stylish European flooring. RIVA Spain featured the most standout show booth which garnered the attention of many dealers and competitors alike.
The Surfaces Convention 2024 in Las Vegas was more than just an exhibition; it was a celebration of innovation, design, and sustainability. It provided a platform for professionals to showcase their latest products, share knowledge, and connect with like-minded individuals. As we look forward to the next edition, it’s clear that the surfaces industry is on an exciting path, blending aesthetics with functionality and sustainability in ways we’ve never seen before.