A life-changing idea can strike in a fleeting moment, but it takes a lifetime to see it through and make it an invention. For Henri Peteri, inventor of the Quooker tap, the 60 degrees Celsius limitation on kitchen hot-water taps was atrocious, and that’s all it took for him to take matters into his hands (and basement). He became passionate and determined to devise a tap that poured boiling water instantly.
“My father was a director at Unilever, who came up with instant soup. That’s when he thought, ‘Well, this is strange. Why don’t we have instantly-available boiling water in the kitchen?’ He then quit his job and started developing the Quooker in our basement, which was a huge step considering he had six children, four of whom were studying”, Walter Peteri, the now-CEO of Quooker, details out.
From there, Henri’s path was, expectedly, far from a bed of roses. Eventually, he needed funds and had to take on odd projects to sustain his family before he could concentrate full-fledgedly on his ‘home’ project.
“In 1985, my brother completed his studies and joined my father in the basement. Five years later, I joined them, and by 1993, we had a sellable product”, Walter reminisces. “In the first year, I remember we sold between 400-500 Quookers in the year, so nearly one per day – and we were thrilled. Cut to 30 years later, and we sold 300,000 Quooker and 80,000 Qubes in the same time frame”, he informs with pride and an unfaltering smile. Qube is Quooker’s latest offering that not only provides boiling water but also gives out sparkling or chilled water from the same nozzle!
Quooker’s Journey in the UAE
The boiling hot-water tap is not new to the luxurious lifestyle of the UAE; it has been seven years since Quooker first came to the region. The sleek and convenient design combined with intelligent technology is a great temptation for UAE’s good-life-loving consumers.
“Seeing our exploding sales number, it is safe to say that having a Quooker has become a norm here. The excellent water supply quality ensures that even the taste of the boiling, sparkling and chilled water is perfect. The UAE and Quooker are an ideal match”, opines Walter.
Philipe van der Loo, Managing Director, Quooker Emirates, brings to light the leap they’ve made since their early years in the Middle East. He says, “Moving from a 90 square metre to a 300 square metre space was a big step for us. Our priority for this move was the well-being of Quooker employees and creating a centre that marked our growth in territory.”
The new Quooker showroom basks in abundant natural light. Designed in partnership with Netherlands-based design company INA-MATT Studio, the space boasts a minimalistic design drenched in signature Quooker colours. Wood, glass and other neutrally hued materials make for a breezy, simple, yet impactful aura.
The pièce de résistance in the showroom is the featured tap models that will enable specifiers like designers and end-consumers to experience the full range of Quooker’s offerings. Right from the original Quooker to the Qube and all the colours, finishes and designs in between – the display makes choosing and absorbing information about the product seamless.
Beyond the display area are the sit and stand workstations and a pantry for the employees. The back of the showroom houses Quooker’s virtual appointment tool and a training area for Quooker tap installers.
“What I hope is if designers come to this showroom that they share our feeling – that we have a functional and modern product and that is a necessity in the modern kitchen”, says Walter.
The Blend of Intuitive Design, Technology & Sustainable Features
Quooker taps, sure enough, stand-out from regular fixtures. You fix a Quooker in a kitchen, and it becomes a point of conversation. The reason for this success is not only the fantastic technology behind Quooker and Qube but also the equal emphasis on its aesthetics.
“Sometimes you see that people have a nice mixing tap, and then there’s a small filtered water tap of a different finish and colour. We have it all integrated into one tap. From an aesthetician’s point of view – it’s a simple solution. You can mount the Quooker to your standard water system, and because the Quooker has a carbon filter inside – it is perfectly safe and very tasteful to drink. Why should you have a kettle or a system to boil water? That’s crazy”, exclaims Walter.
Philipe, too, pitches in with the sustainable aspects of a Quooker, “Sustainability is embedded deep in our DNA. With every Quooker, you save energy because it is 50% more energy efficient than a kettle. You will reduce boiling and having to throw water that you don’t use. Adding a water filter to the Quooker reduces CO2 footprint exponentially because you would use fewer plastic bottles.”
Quooker taps also inculcate several other considerations, like safety features to avoid burns and 360-degree rotatable fixtures. The brand is aware of the competitive market and realises that even though its product is as unique as it is innovative, designers and homeowners also have other pressing concerns. Quooker is always on their toes – and pays keen attention to rising market trends and requirements to deliver a power-packed solution to their clients.
16 May, 2023