I saw my first LAGO kitchen one year ago on a tour of Pierluigi Molteni's Plug-In House at the Cersaie exhibition in Bologna, Italy. That kitchen was different from any I'd seen before — it was basically a high-gloss, green and white striped closet that concealed a microwave, refrigerator, freezer, coffee maker, and a bunch of other small appliances, as well as room for dry goods.Although I'd seen similar all-in-one "wardrobe" style kitchens before (Bulthaup makes some really nice ones), the LAGO kitchens were much more colorful and slick than anything else on the market.
When I looked into the company, I discovered that they're a young outfit based in Milan, and they went public in 2006. In 2009, they were marketing themselves as a mid-to-high-end source for young but well-off Europeans living in small apartments and studios. Storage was their strong point, and they emphasized the modular nature of their designs, which could conceal everything behind a series of bright and shiny doors.
Over the last year, their focus seems to have shifted slightly and they're really pushing their kitchens now. They just launched their 36e8 cucina catalog. Every component of the kitchen — the refrigerator, the pantry, the countertops — is a colorblocked component of a gridded arrangement. The goals are "modularity, flexibility and the possibility of absolute configuration by the end user."
LAGO has multiple shops (called Lagostores) in Italy — including Milan, Rome, and Bologna. They also have locations in London, Leeds, Valencia, Bilbao, Lyon, Bordeaux, and other European cities. There are no US locations or distributors at this time, as far as I know, but they do have an English website where you can learn more.
- Founded: 2006
- Headquarters: Milan, Italy
Simplicity in the forms — subtraction rather than decoration for its own sake; ample possibilities for customization through color and modularity; quality materials combined with the skill of the craftsman; accessible prices. These are the elements which make a Lago product immediately recognizable. Tangram, Statica, Net, 36e8, Fluttua, 30mm, the NOW wardrobes and the new kitchens have all become icons within the collection, acclaimed by critics and marketplace alike.