Bette – Tour of The German Headquarters
This renowned bathtub (but not only, as it turns out) supplier invited us to visit their German headquarters and factory thanks to our involvement with Porcelanosa.
The tour commenced in Bette’s beautiful headquarters. First, we learnt about the company’s heritage and their design philosophy.
We careful studied technical aspects of their products with the great emphasis on the bathtub and shower trays design – from their aesthetics to the parts that do not meet the eye but make them function properly.
Next, we were introduced to many ranges available shown in home-like settings.
The remainder of the trip was dedicated to a top secret factory tour. Bette’s large scale and very modern factory contains at least tens of solid stainless steel forms from ones to make their signature quality baths, shower trays and basins to one-off designs. The items are made by simply dropping a form onto a 4mm piece of steel, which then bends like paper. The rest of the factory is post-production, adjusting that pressed-out piece to become the bath that you see in shops.
The highlight here was a very big area with endless conveyor belts of flying baths – which are going in and out into large ovens, being sprayed, quality checked, sprayed again, baked again, and so on until perfect. We were not allowed to take phones inside, so this might be hard to believe, but yes, flying baths do exist!
Near the headquarters, there is a fairly big experience and testing centre where baths are being mechanically and acoustically tested. The company have also developed some ingenious ways of product installation, clearly with the installer and reliability in mind.
This deeply educational trip surely increased my admiration for Bette’s design and the developed technical solutions.