Hinges

  • Are Boutique Hotels Losing Their Luster?

    Around the 1980’s the term “boutique hotel” started floating around the hospitality world. Over the past several decades this sector of the industry has burst into the mainstream and has become somewhat of a common term.

    Now, even the largest chains are trying to create their own boutique feel (or entirely new brands) to take a piece of the billions being spent for a more intimate lodging experience. This type of hotel is so popular; it leads many to wonder if it has the staying power to continue rising while others claim that it will change the future of travel.

    So, who’s right? Are boutiques in danger of losing their appeal or will they keep on chugging into the future of travel?

    Let’s take a closer look (and see how it can help you).

    The Answer Is Yes (and Yes)

    To be honest, there are truths in both opinions. Definite dangers are knocking on the door of the boutique sector. However, those same dangers are the very thing that are changing the face of all lodgings (big and small).

    The (Potential) Bad

    In a recent conference dedicated to boutique hotels, many agreed that this type of hotel is defined by being unique and intimate. The threat that is knocking on the door of these hip places to stay is big business. Larger chains hope to acquire brands (or start their own) that are geared toward boutique guests.

    Many feel that if your “one of a kind” room is the same in every major city, it takes away the allure of these types of lodgings.

    The (Potential) Good

    Some may be calling the end of the boutique era, but others see a silver lining to big business taking a few notes from what’s popular.

    With so many travelers wanting a more intimate and design friendly experience, chains are beginning to put more effort into each of their new designs (and the older ones). Stagnant, cookie cutter rooms and standard guest areas may be a thing of the past.

    And the industry seemingly owes it to the boutique revolution. Architect, hospitality experts, and designers tend to agree that enthusiasm for the movement isn’t going anywhere soon and even seem to agree that it is good for guests all around.

    One thing is certain, great design is crucial to winning over the young savvy guests of today. SOSS has been making invisible hinges for hotels around the world for nearly 100 years. Your next boutique hotel or large chain update can benefit from our solid designs. To get genuine SOSS Invisible Hinges for your next project see one of our dealers or sales reps.

    Hospitality Design Guide

  • 5 Ways to Make Your Hotel Stand Out

    Make Your Hotel Standout with SOSS!Having the advantage over your competition is something that has been sought after since the dawn of time. Whether it’s war or business, your livelihood depends on being able to best others who are after the same prize.

    While your prize is obviously more guests, your enemy may not be who you think. In reality, the one holding you up is most likely your hotel. You’re not going to sabotage another lodging, or meet them on an open field of battle.

    You have to go to war with yourself and your own location to figure out how you can stand out on a listing and in the eyes of all who choose to stay at your hotel.

    How? That’s a good question and we hope to help. Here are our 5 suggestions.

    1. Communication

    We’re not talking about making sure your staff says, “have a nice stay”. You need to communicate verbally and visually with your guests to show them you care. Here are a few ways to do it:

    - Weather forecasts during wake up and other calls

    - Call before they arrive to let them know you are ready for them

    - Welcome returning guests to let them know you appreciate repeat business

    - Create more signs to leave little notes letting guests know bedding was changed and other    areas were cleaned.

    1. Professionalism

    Since we’re on the topic of communication and signage, everything you do should say the same thing. Colors, patterns, dress code, among other things should all have common branding. One handwritten or poorly spelled sign can turn off every guest that sees it.

    Making sure your brand looks the same to everyone staying will keep you from looking like a poorly run franchise.

    1. Reviews

    Picking up the phone and asking guests how their stay went can be the best marketing money can buy. With reviews on travel sites becoming more and more important, you could offer a discounted stay in return for an honest review.

    Bonus: If you right the wrongs for unsatisfied customers without being confronted, your best reviews may come from those who didn’t like your hotel at first.

    1. Be Social

    If you’re not utilizing social media, you’re missing out (big time). You are in the hospitality industry, perhaps even in a vacation hot spot. Large chains are utilizing digital marketing to fill their empty rooms. The neatest part about using this platform is its cost effectiveness.

    Your ad spend doesn’t have to be very much to see a great return. In fact, you can publish content that gets passed around for free exposure.

    1. Update Your Style

    The popularity of boutique hotels is growing. And the travel industry is being taken over by a younger and more design savvy crowd. All this means that you may need to add a few updates to your rooms. Clean lines and tech friendly spaces are among the most sought after features of a millennial crowd.

    SOSS hardware is used in some of the finest hotels and buildings all over the world. Clean lines are incredibly easy to achieve with our invisible hinges and will last a lifetime. We’d love to show you our designs and help you find a dealer today.

    Hospitality Design Guide

  • Architecture Legacy: Keys to Designing Stunning Buildings

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    There are many reasons you may have chosen the field of architecture. However, it probably wasn’t fortune, fame, or even stability.

    This particular field has some pitfalls, but with some benefits that are unmatched in any other vocation. When you design structures, your name will (even if silently) be attached to a long standing piece of a community. Your work will be utilized and enjoyed by countless people even if your name isn’t on the deed.

    The only thing that could interrupt your satisfaction? Problems with your structure. That’s why we’ve put together some tips to keep your buildings standing long after you’re gone.

    Ready? Let’s go to the drawing board.

    Interesting: Frank Lloyd Wright (born in 1867) still has 409 structures standing today.

    Location, Location, Location

    While you may not have a large amount of say in where a new structure is going, it would benefit you to choose your projects based on a decent location. When it comes to longevity it comes down to the area.

    We’re not talking about geological problems, but rather cultural. Choosing a town, or thoroughfare that’s on the decline will certainly mean doom for a building’s appreciation. While it may remain standing, it may not remain in the same form.

    Example: You really don’t see too many McDonald’s restaurants closing up shop, but you’ll see other franchises and chains closing their doors often. It all comes down to the location being chosen by an entire team of designers, architects, and former city planners vs. someone with a hunch.

    Unique, Yet Timeless

    Once you’ve got a location that is sure to be the hot spot for at least a few decades you can begin designing your masterpiece. Depending on the amount of control, you may have an urge to “make a statement”.

    Lax building codes and a loose cannon have made many buildings that haunt local residences. Your work belongs to the owner and the community and designing something that is a little too you could mean a tarnished reputation. Think a little more Guggenheim and a little less Chinese bird’s nest.

    Use the Best Materials, Of Course

    Having a client that wants to use sub par materials should be another deal breaker for your firm. Not only will this end up costing more in the long run, but it will not hold up until your golden years.

    If you want to sit down on a bench and admire your contribution to the landscape, quality can’t be negotiable.

    SOSS constructs the highest quality invisible hinges on the planet. If you want the clean lines that all lasting structures tend to share, we can help. Visit our Invisible Hinge Catalog to find out about our different designs or contact a dealer today.

    Invisible-Hinge-DG

  • Fixed Invisible Hinges vs. Adjustable Hinges

    A controversy in the door hardware industry argues that adjustable invisible hinges are superior because they can be adjusted as needed. We disagree. We have put together a video that explains the issue for our customers and anyone else debating the purchase of adjustable hinges. Watch this before you make your decision.

     

  • 3 Ways to Give your Kitchen a Wow Factor

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    The kitchen in your home can be a place of community, family, and memories. Although, many people hate even going to their fridge for a snack, let alone cooking a meal and enjoying it with friends. We understand.

    But your negative feelings don’t have to continue, and you don’t necessarily have to crank out $20k to go from boring to something you love. Small changes can turn your kitchen into a room that makes you say…Wow!

    To help on your journey to a better cookery we’ve come up with three things you should consider to make the space pop.

    1. Make A Statement

    Your kitchen wasn’t made for fashion, it was made for cooking and storing food. That’s a necessary part of your life, but not exactly glamorous. You’ll have to help the space along in order to enjoy it. Here are a couple of ways to make a statement:

    Feature Wall: They’re not just for your living room anymore. You can paint one wall a wild, but elegant color and leave the rest with just a fresh coat of normal. This step alone could make a huge difference in your mood when walking into the room.

    Back splash: Adding a colorful or patterned back to your stove or under your cabinets could create a stylish new look that improves the entire look of your kitchen. Try a unique, yet cool pattern (like chevron) or a unique spin on a favorite like subway tiles with a strong color.

    2. Lose the Hardware

    One of the most stylish statements in the modern era can be created by using clean smooth lines. Traditional kitchen hardware and cabinets are bulky at best and tacky at worst.

    By using invisible hinges on cabinets, you can create a seamless line of beauty. Not only will it be sleek and “wow” worthy, it will be durable too. Our SOSS invisible hinges last for decades due to their quality construction.

    3. Change It from Top to Bottom

    No. We’re not suggesting to rip your kitchen down to the studs and start over. We are literally suggesting changing your ceiling and floors (aka the top and bottom).

    The ceilings are usually just a white or textured space that is begging for some color. You can paint it to make it match the rest of the room, or go the extra mile and use fashionable ceiling tiles to make a very wow statement.

    With your floors, it can be tricky. They may be beautiful, but if you are looking for a room that has loads of color you can make some inexpensive (yet drastic changes). Painting wood floors in bright accent colors with a different design will make people take notice. Try something really fun like a zig zag or square patterns to really show off.

    Now, it’s time for you to take an honest look at your kitchen and load up the charm and style until you say WOW!

    Invisible-Hinge-DG

  • Why SOSS Doesn't Offer "Adjustable" Hinges

    SOSS-Hinge-2Door hardware isn’t something we take lightly. We enjoy meeting the needs of our customers with quality AND innovation.

    However, there are times that innovations just aren’t good enough to meet the incredibly high standards we place on our products. When innovation is necessary and makes sense we are on board and come up with and utilize everything at our disposal to meet those needs with new solutions.

    It’s this innovation that led us to create the UltraLatch, a product that allows those with limited mobility to open doors without any turning motion.

    Why Not Adjustable?

    This is a common question people ask if they aren’t in the door hardware industry. Having an “adjustable” hinge sounds so innovative and cutting edge in terms of design, but is it really? It really comes down to 2 basic questions you should ask yourself. Why? And How? Why would I need to adjust an invisible adjustable and how do you make an invisible hinge “adjustable”.

    Why

    The most common reason cited for why you need an adjustable hinge is because once a building settles the door may get out of alignment and need adjusting. What most people don’t know is that commercial buildings don’t settle. It is part of the building codes. If a building settles something is wrong and you may have larger problems to deal with.

    How

    If a building is not supposed to settle and well-built structures don’t settle what else can cause a door to get out of alignment and sag? The most common answer is the hinges themselves are actually wearing out and failing. As the metal wears against the metal from opening and closing a door it will wear.

    With adjustable hinges that wear is applied on the weakest part of the door, which is generally the adjustment screws. Imagine the weight of a 200 pound door opening and closing all day long and the weight being focused on a couple of adjustment screws. It stands to reason that this very design element will wear quickly and cause a door to actually begin to sag. That sagging will require that you “adjust” your door to bring it back into alignment. So the very design feature of these hinges the “adjustability” is one of the reasons the door actually needs to be adjusting. Talk about job security! You create a feature that fixes a problem that didn’t exist before you created the “feature” you are trying to sell.
    The SOSS Difference

    What makes SOSS Invisible Hinges different is the design of our hinges has been around for over a 100 years. Some of our hinges are still in building opening and closing doors over 70 years later without a hint of needing to be adjusted.

    The “secret” is our hinges stack up on solid metal plates and it is these stacks of metal that hold the weight of door – not tiny adjustment screws. We don’t create adjustable hinges because our hinges don’t require adjusting. Never did. Never will.

    We have a full line of hinges to choose from, and a list of dealers if you would like to know more.

    Invisible-Hinge-DG

  • 4 Forgotten Updates in a Remodel Project

    36951391_sRemodels can be a stressful time. While most homeowners find the process worthwhile in terms of return on investment and re-sale value, it’s still a process that can be tough to bear. It could be the time, not being able to utilize the area, or wondering which updates to put more money into.

     

    After all is said and done, there are bound to be a few things that you say, “I wish we would have done that.”

    To help you consider these commonly passed over updates we’ve written our top 4 choices.

    Security System

    Many people who remodel forget to add or simply choose not to use a home security system. There are many benefits to these systems in general, but installing one during a remodel helps you choose a location that would be harder for an intruder to find and “cut”. It would also make it easy to place panels where you would like that makes them less of an eye sore.

    Key Stat: 25% of home intruders cut the phone lines or wiring in order to avoid security alarms.

    Powered Pantry

    Many remodels include a pantry. They are so common due to the rise in popularity of cooking in large remodeled kitchens. However, many homeowners are also following the trend of having clean and open counter space.

    The counters are being cleared off leaving many appliances to be semi permanently left in (you guessed it) the pantry. Powering your pantry with electrical outlets will allow you to use common appliances without them being seen.

    Extra Step: You could go the extra mile and hide your pantry as well by making the door seamlessly attach to your wall with invisible hinges (or even use a hidden door).

    Go Greener

    Aesthetics and home value are usually the two most important reasons to remodel a home, but while it’s all torn apart you can take time to build it up with more energy efficiency. Wire the roof for a future solar install, add skylights for more natural sun, and change out older appliances.

    Make Room for Supplies

    Everyone knows what a broom closet is, but too often mops, brooms, and vacuums end up in a corner or closet where they aren’t welcome. Setting aside a couple feet of floor space next to your laundry or mud room will keep commonly used cleaning supplies out of the way. They’ll still be easily accessible to make your home look good, but won’t hang out for all to see.

    Invisible-Hinge-DG

  • Creating the Ultimate Spa Feel in Your Bathroom

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    The bathroom of your home is where you get ready, it’s where you get clean, and where you may start or end your day. It’s function typically far outweighs its design, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

    It can be a retreat.

    Turning your place of preparation in to a space for relaxation doesn’t have to include costly remodels or expensive new appliances either. There are some subtle, yet effective changes that can bring the spa into your bathroom. A spa treats you to a sensory experience and your bathroom should too. Here are some of our favorite ways to excite your senses.

    Sight

    Walking into your bathroom begins with your eyes. Typically, you see it first and this can start your journey into the spa. Key areas to consider include softening the light with a dimmer or plugin lamp. These options make it more soothing to the eye before and during your trip and are way better than the harsh light of most bathroom fixtures. Changing light fixtures to a softer more natural feel is the best long lasting option and not as expensive as most may think.

    Smell

    Now that you’re inside, the next sense to be inundated with relaxation is smell. Botanical scents help relax many, but it’s all about your preference here. Try to make it as natural as possible with reed diffusers or even fresh flowers. Plugins and other tools can work, but may detract from the look and feel of your new spa.

    Hearing

    Now that you’re inside and the door is shut, it’s time to hear the sounds of the spa. Music can help, but make sure it’s relaxing. The most important aspect of hearing isn’t so much what you hear, it’s what you don’t hear. Kids, TV’s, and spouses can often break into your retreat. You can avoid this by using music, scheduling your spa time, or (if you’re hardcore) sound proof the walls for maximum retreat feel.

    Touch

    The keywords in the touch category are soft and smooth. You’ve laid eyes on your spa, smelled the sweet scents, heard beautiful sounds (and not heard loud ones). The only thing left is to feel it. You can surround yourself with soft towels and robes for starters. Gather some of the most eccentric and soothing soaps around to take it up another level.

    For a look that takes the spa to the next level, try using invisible hinges to create smooth lines for your cabinets and doors. Your seamless look will be easy on the eyes and on the touch. Our hinges are made from the highest quality materials and are perfect to create a beautiful bathroom where you can truly retreat. Find a dealer today.

    Invisible-Hinge-DG

  • 5 Kitchen Updates to Skyrocket Your Home's Value

    45169185_sEveryone knows that updating a home’s kitchen is one of the best (if not the best) way to increase the value of that property. Although, as with most things in life, there are some things that work better than others.

    So, what are some of the things to do in your kitchen that offers the best bang for the buck?

    Great question, and it’s the one we hope to answer with our five high return on investment (ROI) updates.

    1. Pantry

    One of the most common problems in the kitchens of existing homes is the lack of pantry space. Many homes don’t even have a pantry! If you’ve watched a home show or two, you may have noticed that potential buyers clamor over a well thought out and sizeable space for dry goods. This storage space not only adds value; it could end up being one of the primary selling points for your home.

    2. Extra Eating Space

    Not so much in the form of an eat in kitchen. Think of it as bonus space for feeding the kids in the morning with a breakfast nook. Or perhaps a high counter with a couple of stools to continue the conversation with friends after dinner. It doesn’t necessarily need to be a place for large meals, but enough space to feel intimate and not crowded. No one wants to eat in the dining room for lunch, and once you’re done eating; guests usually vacate to other areas.

    3. Lighting, Lighting, Lighting

    The reason kitchens are so important to a home’s value is due to their uses being expanded. Years ago, the cookery was used to prepare food, that’s it. Now, it’s for homework, friends, dinner, lunch, business, you name it. That being said, people like primary living spaces that have a lot of light. If you can go natural, even better. Just make sure there’s enough and it fits the room and creates a warm feel.

    4. Ridiculous Amounts of Storage

    Not just cabinets, although they are a category all their own. The pantry (mentioned earlier) will go a long way, but adding extra space and maybe even utilizing space saving fixtures. Something like a chandelier that also holds pots and pans, or a fashionable magnetic knife holder and spice rack. The extra space will always get used and makes the room super appealing to home shoppers.

    5. Luxury Cabinets

    If there is a most important update, it would be the cabinets. Buyers wonder if there are enough cabinets immediately upon entering every kitchen they see. Not only that, but if the cabinets have updates like soft closing and if they maximize space usage. The sale price of your house will be directly impacted by new cabinets if they look stunning and function well.

    One of the best ways to ensure a look that stands out among the rest is to use invisible cabinet hinges. These hinges are some of the best quality you can find, and will last as long as the cabinets (actually longer if allowed). SOSS has made invisible hinges since 1903 and help some of the highest value properties in the world look even better.

    Invisible-Hinge-DG

  • 10 Ways To Put a Secret Room In Your Home

    28968655_sThere are many functions of having a hidden room in your house. From having a place to keep your valuable things to being able to stay focused without any distraction, a secret room is a wonderful solution. Further, secret rooms are becoming popular as safe rooms for protection of your family.

    Secret rooms can only fulfill their purpose if they are well hidden and very discreet. No one can suspect about its existence, or its function will be ruined. The key to obtaining a successfully hidden place is your creativeness. The more you use your imagination and adapt your home, the more options you will have for creating a secret space.

    Below you will find a list of 10 creative ways to design a secret room in your home:

    Wine Cabinets
    A wine cabinet is used for storing and organizing wine bottles, but it can be a very useful way to hide your wine cellar full of your favorite vintages. Install an invisible hinge on your cabinet and you will have your very own secret cellar.

    Bookshelves
    The same thing can be done with a bookshelf inside your home library. You only need to choose one bookshelf to hide a different room with your favorite and rare books. The perfect idea for having a secret room in your home is installing a SOSS Invisible Hinge into your bookshelf and use it as a passageway. Your secret door will be completely inconspicuous with this hinge.

    Towel Cabinets
    Using a Towel Cabinet inside your bathroom is another creative way to hide a room or a sauna for example. If you always dreamed of having a sauna, why not have a private one?

    Stairway Rooms
    If you have kids, a great idea for creating a secret room is to build under a stairway in your home. Building a small, themed playroom for your children is a way to fire their imagination and keep them playing and learning.

    Toy Shelves
    In case you don't have stairs at your house don't worry, you will probably have a toy shelf that you can also use as a passageway to a secret room. Your children will love a small passageway that they can crawl through to a room that's only for them.

    Paintings
    One painting of a reasonable size can also be an original way to hide a secret room. No one will suspect the existence of your private space.

    Mirrors
    Door size mirrors are fairly easy to come by. You can attach the mirror to the wall using SOSS invisible hinges so it can be used as a portal to a secret room that you use to keep your jewelry and valuable objects safe.

    Tall Dressers
    A tall dresser with a false bottom is an unusual and practical way to keep a secret room well hidden for life. Large old-fashioned wardrobes with fake backs or bottoms are also wonderful for this purpose.

    Fireplaces
    A fake fireplace is a great alternative if you want to ensure that no one will ever discover your secret room. Some are built to where the entire mantle moves and other just utilize a fake fireplace insert.

    Rock Walls
    Rock Walls that are well designed can be a successful way to hide a passageway to your secret room. Keep in mind the importance of the Invisible Hinge by SOSS here too. Otherwise, your secret room will be quickly exposed.

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