Chicago—The 51st edition of NeoCon was a resounding success, further establishing itself as the premier, global platform for connecting, learning, and conducting business in the commercial interiors industry—according to show officials. This year’s event was marked by robust attendance and a palpable energy that coursed throughout the show, as the commercial A&D community immersed themselves in everything design.
The NeoCon Plaza, an experiential outdoor environment sponsored and outfitted by Haworth and Haworth Collectionas well as by Sunbrella Contract and Econyl by Aquafil, was a hit with attendees who used it to connect, collaborate, relax, recharge, unwind and enjoy the outdoors. The space—which was designed by Gensler Chicago in collaboration with Forward Fruit Branded Environments—is a direct example of the movement of incorporating the outdoors into the workplace.
Rounding out the 51st edition was a captivating educational program headlined by keynote presenters Robin Standefer, Stephen Alesch, Ilse Crawford and Liz Ogbu, as well as new designer-led tours of notable Chicago spaces, dynamic installations and can’t-miss industry gatherings.“The success of any given built project lies in how effective, useful, enjoyable and healthy it is for those who occupy the space,” said Byron Morton, vice president of leasing, NeoCon. “Applying that measure of success to NeoCon 2019, I think it’s fair to say it was a strong, vibrant edition. Whether it was connecting with colleagues outdoors in the NeoCon Plaza, taking in the powerful keynote presentations and seminar offerings, or exploring the many
floors of showroom and exhibitor spaces, innovations and activations, the design world was treated to an inspirational and productive experience.”
A testament to the continued strength and enduring value of NeoCon, seven new permanent showrooms opened, and several tenants unveiled renovated new spaces designed by top firms, just in time for this year’s edition. New tenants include Hightower—which was honored with the IIDA/Contract Magazine Showroom and Booth Design Competition for Best in Competition overall, and for Best Small Showroom—as well as Kwalu, Beaufurn, Montisa, Cumberland Furniture, Emeco and HAT Contract. Eighty-five new to NeoCon brands joined the roster in the NeoCon Exhibit Hall on the 7th floor, which also featured many returning exhibitors who opted for larger spaces for the 2019 edition. Trends included ancillary spaces, phone booth-like structures, a focus on acoustics, amenity spaces and outdoor-oriented solutions.
Floor covering exhibitors shared some of their observations:
“Tarkett’s Neocon 2019 will be remembered by very robust traffic throughout the show’s three days,” said Chris Stulpin, chief creative officer, Tarkett North America. “We met with numerous workplace customers as well as key end users from across all segments. Design firms were very well represented from a diverse geography, and our strategic channel partners came out in droves. We were thrilled with attendance and even more excited by the overwhelmingly positive response to our products from both existing customers and new relationships.”
Jeff Collum, president and CEO, Teknoflor, shared in the excitement. “This year’s show was historic—full of excitement, launches and conversations that showcase the huge potential of the commercial industry to continue breaking ground with innovative solutions. There was vibrancy around HMTX’s presence and a feeling of power and promise around our Teknoflor brand.”
NeoCon 2020 will be held June 8-10 at The Mart in Chicago.