In 1990 Aqualisa, one of our long-standing clients, needed help with a particular problem. Their bi-metallic shower units were starting to look unwieldy, and competitors were catching up. It was time for an innovation.
We held a roundtable creative workshop with a variety of shower experts, from Aqualisa’s marketing, technical and sales staff, to plumbers, installers and, of course, end users. The result was a rough sketch, which we still
have today, outlining a totally new idea. If we could separate the control from the mixer, we could create a much more compact product — and, importantly, open the door to more sophisticated features in the future.
For the first time, you could adjust the temperature from outside the shower before you stepped in.
Technically, we knew we had a long road ahead. We worked on the idea alongside Aqualisa’s day-to-day projects, developing and testing the new system for over 10 years. The result was Quartz, a new range of digital showers.
For the first time, you could adjust the temperature from outside the shower before you stepped in. The control unit didn’t need to carry water, making it much smaller. Keeping the thermostat separate also meant
it was easier — and cheaper — to install. The new design kept the old valve to respect the fact people didn’t like anything that looked electrical near the shower.
Quartz won a DBA Effectiveness Award in 2003, and the patents on Quartz gave Aqualisa a market lead for many years. More advances followed, from baths that run themselves to multiple memory settings — so everyone can have the perfect shower.