Where to go at imm 2009
Jan 10, 2009

Things have not become any less confusing in Cologne. The traditional Passagen program has ostensibly sparked quite a design boom in the city, something that sounds somewhat over the top in the current situation. At the same time, after the other players have ignored and resisted the fair for so many years, it has suddenly independently proclaimed a "Cologne Design Week". The week is set to focus on a new location known as "Halle 11", at Rheinauhafen, another source of confusion because there is also a hall 11 at the Exhibition Center. The week also involves shows at established venues such as Design Post, Sidispot, Spichernhöfe and KAP Forum. Arcades versus Cologne Design Week. What if something goes wrong?
Whatever the case, we have restricted ourselves to a short survey of the locations in the city, places where we should be able to expect good design of both the new and the established kind.

Design Post
Not far from the Exhibition Center and the Deutz railway station, Design Post (it has now been running for a good three years) has become an established and valued center for high-end design. For imm 2009 its exhibition space has been comprehensively restructured and we can look forward to new exhibitors such as Swiss company Nanoo, among others. Its largely positive reception with exhibitors and visitors alike has made Design Post a gratifying counterpoint to the Exhibition Center which has been lurching from crisis to crisis for years.

In recent years, a new design district has grown up at Rheinauhafen. Alongside the established KAP Forum, showrooms and exhibition halls have sprung up, locations that are being used extensively this year for the first time and that definitely appear to merit a visit. The focus of activities at Rheinauhafen is "Halle 11".

If you are looking for a dignified setting this is the place to come. Here you will find B&B Italia, Tobias Grau and Boffi with their showrooms. Whereas in previous years Spichernhöfe was also host to a series of other companies and projects, now, the focus appears to have changed in favor of the more established. And it's not bad, either.

In the "Ehrenfeld Design Zone" you should visit not only the Dornbacht presentation at Mike Meiré but also the materials platform MaterialConnexion and some of the numerous studios and workshops that have established themselves here over the past years.

Not far from the main railway station Sidispot, a center for Spanish design, has become established. With a large number of events, a representative selection of leading Spanish manufacturers and an impressive space concept in rooms at the Bachem House, Sidispot is a place worth visiting.

Pesch Wohnen
Although what was once Germany's most important furnishing store has since gone bankrupt, things appear to be looking up at Pesch. The traditional reception on Tuesday is still taking place and individual manufacturers such as Foscarini are also still being showcased there. Let us hope that the company's courage and staying power pay off in the end..

Wohnkultur 66 at the Hotel Chelsea
A small tip alongside the more established locations: the presentation by Scandinavia experts from Hamburg at Hotel Chelsea with designs by Finn Juhl, the lighting series by Eric Magnussen and carpet and textile collections by Hanne Vedel promises to be one of the highlights.

For the first time, the "designers fair", a cooperation between the Voggenreiter bureau and the Heimatdesign platform, is taking place at the former railway head office on Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer that was once used as a location by Stylepark (together with the neighboring new buildings, a complex now known as Rheintriadem). Here, young talents and the no longer so young kind are exhibiting their latest creations. We can hardly wait.

Die Kunstbar
During imm cologne, Quinze & Milan invites you to meet under the Dome. Quinze & Milan furnished the interior of the 174 square meters large "die Kunstbar" with various adaptions of the "Room 26" Seat by Studio Arne Quinze. Die Kunstbar opens every evening at 6 pm. (see article Big brother is having a drink with you)

You can find the entire arcades program at