Designer Bath and Salem Plumbing Supply
- Berfmeyer Associates Inc.
- Watertown, Massachusetts
Founded in 1945, Designer Bath & Salem Plumbing Supply offers upscale kitchen and bath fixtures and accessories to architecture, construction, and design professionals as well as homeowners. Led by Jason Sevinor, president and grandson of the founder, this three-generation success story has received numerous accolades for its artfully curated inventory and exceptional customer service. When Sevinor opened a second showroom in Watertown, Massachusetts in 2017, he chose Fiberon composite cladding for the building’s rain screen façade. Among the reasons: aesthetic appeal, durability, low maintenance, and customer support from project start to finish.
Located in a busy commercial district
in Watertown, the new Designer Bath showroom needed a distinct look and feel to distinguish the space from its neighbors. Sevinor enlisted the help of Boston-based architectural firm, Bergmeyer Associates Inc.
“Upon first impression, their building was easy to overlook, being set back from the street and rather non-descript” recalls Mare Weiss, Bergmeyer Principal. “Our goal was to make the building exterior warm and inviting to showcase the products within to passersby.”
Weiss envisioned a rain screen façade, both for its aesthetic appeal and moisture management properties. The challenge was finding a material that could deliver the visual “wow” the client wanted, while still ensuring lasting durability and easy maintenance.
“We first thought of using Ipe, a dense and beautiful tropical wood capable of withstanding most weather conditions,” Weiss says. “However, we had some concerns about the costs of both product and installation, as well as
“We considered other composites,” Sevinor adds, “but I’d seen them get moldy and I wasn’t interested in scrubbing a rain screen. I don’t have the time. We needed something to check all the boxes. And nothing did until we found Fiberon.”
“Fiberon provided the look, feeling, and durability that we were searching for,” Weiss says, “and we were able to install it as a rain screen for a seamless installation.”
Fiberon composite cladding delivered an authentic wood look with plenty of visual impact, just as Weiss had envisioned.
“I saw that Fiberon has been used for rain screens in the past and that was really important to me,” Sevinor adds. “It gave me a comfort level.”
Among the other notable benefits were “the durability, the fade resistance, the ‘install it, get it done, and forget about it,’” Sevinor says. Even the detailed instructions on the website were a factor. Information on proper board spacing, air gaps, and the science behind rain screens were important considerations as Sevinor evaluated his options.
Exceptional customer service was another key driver. Here, Fiberon earned high marks. “If we had questions, they got answered,” Sevinor says. “Our dealer had a Fiberon contact and any time my contractor had a question, the answer was, ‘this is what you need to do … it was never, ‘we don’t know, we’ve never done this before.”
Installation was smooth and problem-free as well. “I checked in with my installer as the process was going forward” Sevinor remembers, “and he said it was easy. And if it’s easy for him and I don’t have to get further involved, then that’s great for me as the owner.”
The initial goal of this project was to take a building that “looked like every other warehouse in Watertown and make it a space where people would stop and say, ‘What is that, what’s in there?” Sevinor recalls. “And I think we were successful … it’s transformative.”
“Designer Bath was thrilled with the outcome,” Weiss agrees. “Fiberon helped us to successfully meet our challenge, and I would not hesitate to use them again.”