BY BARBARA T. NELLES AND BETH ENGLISH The latest crop of new beds unveiled at the Winter Las Vegas Market Jan. 28-Feb. 1 in Las Vegas were so inviting-looking, the editors of Sleep Savvy couldn’t resist pausing to rest-test a slew of them. Ahhh! We weren’t disappointed. But we didn’t…
Vendors expanded showrooms, extended lines and unveiled a wealth of new products that made buyers’ choices tough
For trade journalists covering the Winter Las Vegas Market Jan. 26-30, the scene in the World Market Center was ideal — not so busy that vendors didn’t have time to talk about their introductions and filled with plenty to see in many newly supersized showrooms.
Afterward, show organizer International Market Centers didn’t release attendance statistics, helping to confirm our impression that this wasn’t a record-breaker in terms of traffic. Most vendors reported at least one or two busy days, and many began market activities a day early, hosting parties and special events on Saturday before the official Sunday opening.
Sleep products exhibitors kicked off the new year with line overhauls, revamped showrooms and mattress components news. Most importantly, we bore witness to the fact that there was no shortage of attractive, well-priced and comfortable sleep products for retailers to choose from. Here are some of the key trends from the show — all meant to stand out in the crowd and assist bedding buyers in making those difficult purchasing decisions:
- The mega-showroom: Large, welcoming spaces were the order of the day. Many exhibitors increased their showrooms to accommodate more products, as well as additional creature comforts. At some, you could enjoy lunch, a cocktail, a massage or a nap! Malouf spread out into a new 35,000-square-foot showroom, while Ergomotion finished fitting out its spalike space, which tops 30,000 square feet. South Bay International tripled its space and Mlily USA doubled its showroom. Kingsdown added a separate café. Leggett & Platt Inc. refreshed its already large showroom, where it displayed its adjustable bases and comfort foam capabilities.
- Name game: What’s in a name? Tempur Sealy International Inc. recognized the power of Posturepedic and brought it back to the forefront of its collection names with the launch of Sealy Posturepedic Plus. Serta Simmons Bedding LLC found a new use for its well-regarded legacy brand. Simmons was reintroduced as a youthful and colorfully accessorized group of boxed beds aimed at first-time mattress buyers.
- Complete reinvention: Marshall Mattress unveiled a whole new image and vibe with its redesigned showroom and new product lineup. And Intellibed remade itself, introducing high-tech products, a visually enticing new showroom and even a new sales team.
- DTLVM: That stands for “direct to Las Vegas Market” and it’s about online brands opening wholesale showrooms, and wholesale brands creating boxed bed programs. Direct-to-consumer players at the market included Casper, new exhibitor GhostBed, and Resident. In many of these showrooms, the hot topics were parcel sizes, shipping services and other logistical details. As one exhibitor said about his company’s new boxed bed line, “We’d like retailers to buy by the truckload, but we’ll also drop-ship directly to their customers.”
- Miracle sleep aid or fad: We were surprised by how many bedding exhibitors have jumped on the cannabidiol and hemp bandwagons. (See story in footer.) We encountered several mattresses and pillows infused with CBD, or containing hemp fiber or hemp yarn, including the CannaBed mattress, Malouf CBD ActiveDough pillow, Mayner Hempapedic bed, Mlily Mprove bed, NCFI Eco-Lux CBD pillow, Paramount Sleep Nature’s Spa bed, Therapedic b-Calm bed and ZBD bed. Look for an in-depth report on the use of CBD oil and hemp yarn in the May issue of BedTimes.
The following photo album provides more highlights from three days spent touring the market.
Note: All prices are suggested retails for a queen-size mattress only unless otherwise noted.
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Serta: All in the Packaging
Serta, part of Atlanta-based bedding major Serta Simmons Bedding LLC, turned heads with its ability to compress, roll and package mattresses into boxes so small they fit easily into a Smart car.
The smaller box can hold an all-foam queen or king mattress with a profile as high as 10 inches, said Onney Crawley, Serta vice president of marketing. The new packaging technique will be used with a Serta Perfect Sleeper collection launching this summer.
The company also added six hybrid beds ($1,199 to $2,199) to its redesigned iComfort by Serta collection, which “launched with great momentum at the last market (and) provides the perfect cooling temperature for sleep,” Crawley said.
South Bay International: Supersize
Pomona, California-based South Bay International expanded its showroom to three times its former size, now occupying 6,000 square feet.
“The large, inviting space allows us to show our entire product line,” said Toby Konetzny, South Bay senior vice president of business development. “We also are expanding our existing warehouse and manufacturing facility in California (from 60,000 square feet to 220,000 square feet), where we now domestically manufacture 60% of our products.”
Customatic Technologies: Like Sleeping on a Cloud
Phil Sherman, president of Natick, Massachusetts-based adjustable bed producer Customatic Technologies, explained the company’s latest sleep product, Climate Cloud, while a showroom visitor tested it. The proprietary climate control system, which is built into the headboard, draws in air and circulates it over the sleeper, keeping the temperature an optimum 62 degrees to 67 degrees Fahrenheit. Priced at $3,000, the system can be used with any mattress but is shown here with Customatic’s Perfec-Temp mattress, which includes two-zoned temperature regulation.
Customatic also introduced SnoreSense, a sleep monitor that detects snoring and automatically raises the sleeper’s head in 2-degree increments until the snoring stops.
E.S. Kluft & Co.: Smart Anniversary
Rancho Cucamonga, California-based mattress producer E.S. Kluft & Co. celebrated the 80th anniversary of its Aireloom brand by debuting an Aireloom smart mattress and a new Aireloom collection. The Aireloom Adapt/React smart mattress adjusts the firmness for each sleeper to improve comfort and spinal alignment, and tracks sleeping patterns over time on both sides of the bed. Priced at $6,000, the mattress is controlled by a smartphone or tablet.
Kluft also introduced the Aireloom Karpen Natural collection of six beds — three hybrids and three latex models — which retail from $2,599 to $7,999 for a set. All are made with natural materials, such as wool, latex, cashmere and cotton.
Marshall Mattress: Canadian Chic
At Marshall Mattress, General Manager Valerie Stranix oversaw a complete rebranding of the company, its products and showroom.
The Toronto-based company, part of Spain’s The Flex Group, introduced a three-collection, step-up program ($1,900 to $8,000), using the company’s heritage Marshall coils and a new combination of luxurious stretch damasks, high-end fibers, and specialty foams and latex.
The redesigned line’s overall look is “modern/rustic Canadian chic,” Stranix said, as she hugged a pillow featuring the brand’s iconic buffalo plaid.
Restonic: Too Cool
Among the news at Buffalo, New York-based licensing group Restonic was the launch of the five-bed Scott Living Signature Mattress collection by Restonic ($1,999 to $2,999). The hybrid mattresses have pocket coils, a supportive seat edge, and premium fabrics and foams with cooling features.
Sealy Posturepedic: High Style
Tempur Sealy International Inc., headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky, brought its Posturepedic brand name back to the forefront with the launch of the 10-bed Sealy Posturepedic Plus collection ($999 to $1,499).
The beds represent the top step in a new, three-collection Sealy Posturepedic lineup rolling out throughout this year and next. Sealy Posturepedic Plus has a cooling, high-contrast panel, plenty of coils and premium memory foam comfort layers.
Intellibed: Sweet Dreams
In its completely redesigned showroom, Salt Lake City-based Intellibed unveiled the Intellibed Sleep Genius Smart Base. It’s an adjustable bed that uses “neurosensory” music and motion developed by scientists to help astronauts sleep.
The base communicates with smart home technology, and its aim is to “treat sleep, not track sleep,” said Bryant Looper, vice president of sales, as he demonstrated the base’s features to some contented retailers. The base is meant to work with the company’s line of mattresses containing its exclusive Gel Matrix mattress technology.
King Koil: As You Like It
King Koil’s move to Avondale, Arizona, inspired the southwestern foot protector on its new four-model iBed collection ($1,299 to $1,799). The mattresses are available in all-foam or hybrid constructions, and retailers can offer consumers conventional delivery or compressed and roll-packed boxed beds, said David Binke, King Koil chief executive officer. “We know a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work, but creative solutions do.”
Malouf: Breathing Room
Scott Carr, marketing manager, (left) and Sam Malouf, chief executive officer, welcomed visitors to Logan, Utah-based Malouf’s new showroom — it’s six times bigger than the previous space. At 35,000 square feet, the showroom gave visitors plenty of opportunity to see the 12 product launches Malouf brought to market.
In addition to new furniture, the sleep products supplier showcased its 55 Adjustable Bed Base series with new features and an updated app that now includes snore detection. Malouf also debuted a CBD pillow, set to retail for $99.
Paramount Sleep: Celebrating A.H. Beard
Norfolk, Virginia-based mattress maker Paramount Sleep Co., which brought its Las Vegas showroom into the World Market Center for the first time, celebrated the Australian brand A.H. Beard’s 120th anniversary with the A.H. Beard Signature collection. Each bed is hand-tufted and the pocket springs are arranged by hand in a nested configuration, then overlaid with alpaca, cashmere, mohair and wool from Australia.
Eclipse International: True Luxury
The Eclipse International showroom was packed with introductions, from the new Bliss in a Box (part of Pure Talalay Bliss) to the redesigned Ernest Hemingway Key West collection to the extended luxury Velika line.
Also noteworthy were new, crisply tailored models in the luxurious Chittenden & Eastman collection (pictured above), which sits near the top of the North Brunswick, New Jersey-based manufacturer and licensing group’s Eastman House brand. Priced at $2,000 and $2,500, the beds are outer tufted by hand and carry the tagline, “It Takes Time to Make a Great Mattress.” Components include New Zealand wool, Talalay latex and a double row of 4-inch pocket springs.
Diamond Mattress: High-Margin Hybrid
Diamond Mattress showcased a sharply priced boxed bed group, available branded or private label, that it can drop-ship nationwide. Pictured is a model from the top-of-the-line Balance Copper Hybrid collection, retailing from $699 to $899, and featuring the company’s proprietary wrapped coil unit, several layers of copper-containing foams and a cooling panel fabric.
“We leverage our vertically integrated factory and 80 years of vetting and sourcing the best suppliers and materials to bring unbeatable-value hybrids to market,” said Shaun Pennington, president of Diamond Mattress, which has headquarters in Rancho Dominguez, California.
Reverie: Upping Attachment
Helping retailers attach more adjustable bases to retail tickets is what drives Reverie’s recently launched and carefully planned education initiative, said Deena Gardner, director of marketing for the adjustable base supplier headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.
The free digital training program is available at the customer portal on its website and is divided into four one-week modules. Retail sales associates must take a test to pass each module before graduating to the next level.
“There’s a gamification element to make the training fun,” Gardner said. “And we provide data to retailers so they can track RSAs’ progress and the impact on their sales success.”
BioSleep Concept Inc.: Hot and Cold
BioSleep Concept Inc., based in Riverside, California, introduced Hocomat, a temperature-controlled, 100% natural latex topper ($1,000 in queen). The latex foam is poured around a tubing network that conducts cooled or heated water throughout the finished topper. It’s wire-free, with a thermostat and heating/cooling unit that rests alongside the bed.
PureCare: New Sheets and Pillows, Too
In addition to becoming a domestic manufacturer with the launch of a pillow production line at its Phoenix headquarters, sleep accessories supplier PureCare extended its bed linen offerings with a 100% Supima cotton line, retailing for $299 in a queen set.
“The strength of extra-long staple cotton ensures continuous, long-lasting softness that maintains rich color, wash after wash,” said Sarah Bergman, PureCare vice president of marketing.
Beautyrest: In Harmony
The showroom window for the Beautyrest brand’s new Harmony Lux collection had a distinctive aquatic vibe. Among the mattress’ many features, such as center third support using coils with two strands twisted together, the ticking incorporates Seaqual, which is spun from plastic bottles pulled from oceans and recycled.
Each queen mattress includes the equivalent of 50 water bottles, said Andrew Long, senior director of Beautyrest marketing for Atlanta-based Serta Simmons Bedding LLC. The models in the nine-bed line, which retail from $1,099 to $1,999, include cooling technologies.
A new Beautyrest campaign encourages consumers to “Sleep First Class.”
SleepSolutions: Expand and Contract
SleepSolutions, headquartered in Farmington, Arkansas, offered an interesting take on adjustable bases. Its expandable adjustable bases, which will ship at the end of the second quarter, can accommodate different size mattresses. Available in three versions, the twin XL ($700) comes with four clip-on planks, allowing it to hold a full XL mattress. The queen base ($800) has fold-out side boards that will support a king mattress. A second queen model ($1,100) has fold-out side boards and clip-ons at the head of the bed that will accommodate a California king.
Boyd’s Nautica Begins Shipping
St. Louis-based Boyd Sleep touted the strength of its newest license, Nautica Home, and announced the launch of display advertising and social media marketing in support of its feature-packed Nautica Home five-bed assortment ($599 to $999). The company also has a new website devoted to Nautica.
Nautica Home is shipping now and offers retailers significantly higher margins than direct-to-consumer brands that have entered the wholesale arena, plus a choice of shipping and delivery options, the company said.
Englander: For the Dreamers
Englander is feeling refreshed. In January, the Chicago-based licensing group debuted a new brand image, new messaging, a new website and a new national mattress line, the first in more than 20 years. The Dreamer collection includes 14 mattresses made with wrapped coils, copper-infused foam and copper-infused latex, and are dressed in navy, charcoal and taupe. The line starts at $2,499 and tops out at $3,499.
“The vision came from our brand,” said Mark Kinsley, Englander president. “What’s meaningful and authentic to Englander? Well, our heritage is really rich, and I wanted to bring some of that back to the surface, but also come across as modern and relevant. Latex is the perfect way to do that. It feels amazing and it lasts.”
Brooklyn Bedding: Refreshing
Phoenix-based Brooklyn Bedding offered a cool touch with its new Fresca bed. The hybrid, which retails for $599, includes pocket coils and convoluted foam to help with airflow and is topped with a cool-to-the-touch fabric.
Therapedic: Designed to Soothe
Princeton, New Jersey-based licensing group Therapedic International unveiled b-Calm, a three-bed line ($999 to $1,499) with a trendy ingredient, CBD oil. Available in all-foam or hybrid constructions, the tailored, smooth-top beds with waterfall borders have a cannabidiol-infused panel fabric and latex comfort layer. The product line was designed by Therapedic’s Florida licensee Adam Weinman and can ship flat packed or roll packed, said Susan Mathes, Therapedic vice president of brand relations.
At its Tempur-Pedic showroom, Tempur Sealy International Inc., based in Lexington, Kentucky, demonstrated its enhanced product training platform, renamed The Snooz. The online course is now a certification program that breaks lessons for retail sales associates into bite-size chunks and gives store owners and managers insights into employees’ progress and performance.
Jill Johnson, Tempur-Pedic vice president of marketing, also provided an update on the number of honors and awards the Tempur-Pedic brand earned in the previous six months, and discussed the successful summer launch of the Tempur-Ergo Smart Base with Sleeptracker and the number of users (1,517) currently taking advantage of its advanced analytics.
NCFI: Preferred Product
If you want an all-foam mattress that has earned the designation of BioPreferred by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, just ask Chris Bradley, NCFI executive vice president, about NCFI’s Eco-Lux mattress. Priced to retail for $1,299, this 11-inch bed uses support and memory foams that are certified by the BioPreferred program as developed and manufactured from plants and other renewable materials. The Mount Airy, North Carolina-based foam producer and bedding maker says 34% of the final product is made from renewable content.
Leggett & Platt Inc.: One-Stop Shopping
In a refreshed showroom, Carthage, Missouri-based Leggett & Platt Inc. prepared retailers for its third-quarter launch of new adjustable bases with proprietary Comfort Connect smart home technology. For the first time, the company also added displays featuring products and services from its Elite Comfort Solutions division.
“This is all that we can do — from logistics to specialty foams to (finished products such as) U.S.-made mattresses, pillows and toppers. We’re a one-stop shop for your line,” said Matt Wallace, ECS vice president of business and product development.
Spring Air International: Box Score
For the first time, Chelsea, Massachusetts-based licensing group Spring Air International has stepped into the boxed bed arena. Its new line featuring four mattresses — 8-inch Calm, 10-inch Serene, 12-inch Relax and 14-inch Tranquility — will be sold to dealers only, not directly to consumers online by Spring Air.
“These have been a hit,” said Nick Bates, Spring Air president.
Retail prices range from $399 (memory foam) to $599 (hybrid).
Ergomotion: Body, Mind and Spirit
Lisa Kelly, Ergomotion vice president of marketing, said Ergomotion wants to elevate the adjustable base category, no pun intended. The Santa Barbara, California-based company showcased its Wellness Retreat series, which includes four models — Relax, Restore, Renew and Rewind. The Relax, targeted to the consumer who is looking for balance and self-care, includes an aromatherapy diffuser and sound bar built into the upholstered headboard. Restore is designed for those who want to wake up feeling focused and productive. With a heating cocoon for foot warming and circulation, Renew is directed at baby boomers, and Rewind is for those looking for a mindful experience paired with modern design. All come with the benefits of Ergomotion’s 330 slim base, including massage, sleep data tracking and smart home integration. Each headboard-base combination retails for $2,995.
Italian mattress maker Magniflex, with U.S. headquarters in Miami, added a new model to its successful MagniStretch line. The 10-inch MagniStretch Sport adds a $2,299 introductory price point to the group. It, like the two other models in the collection, features patented technology endorsed by the American Chiropractic Association to stretch and decompress the spine.
Corsicana: A Step Above
Dallas-based producer Corsicana Mattress Co. stepped across its $1,000 price threshold with two new models in the NightsBridge collection. Priced to retail from $1,299 to $1,999, the new beds include an all-foam design and a hybrid model with individually wrapped coils and microcoils.
“They retail for half the price (of comparable mattresses) but offer our retail partners twice the margin,” said Mike Thompson, Corsicana chief executive officer.
In addition to these debuts, Corsicana unveiled the 1939 Limited Edition Anniversary mattress ($399) to mark the 80th anniversary of the American Bedding brand. The company also expanded roll-packed offerings in each of its five brands.
Kingsdown: Into the Box
Mebane, North Carolina-based mattress manufacturer Kingsdown has brought a little luxury to its first foray into the boxed bed category.
“Our retail partners invited us to develop a Kingsdown boxed bed design that follows our brand quality ethos,” said Frank Hood, Kingsdown chief executive officer. “The beds are built to Kingsdown standards with high-quality materials to provide support, performance and luxury not typically found in boxed beds.”
The mattress is priced to retail for $1,399. Kingsdown also launched a branded boxed pillow line that features a pillow-in-a-pillow design, allowing customers to remove the core pillow for a different feel. It retails for $79.99.
Mlily USA: Welcome to Dreamland
Mlily USA had plenty of space to spread out, thanks to its new 10,000-square-foot showroom.
“We virtually doubled our space,” said Stephen Chen, president of Knoxville, Tennessee-based Mlily USA.
The showroom highlighted the manufacturer’s new online promotional line — Max Colchon. Priced below $1,000, the six-bed collection includes three foam and three hybrid mattresses. For the second year, Mlily USA partnered with Special Spaces, a nonprofit organization that transforms the bedrooms of terminally ill children.
Southerland Inc.: Soft Spot
Southerland Inc., a bedding producer with headquarters in Nashville, added several line extensions within its family of brands, including six hybrid beds ($999 to $1,699 for a set) that expand its Signature collection. All feature pocket springs and offer a choice of specialty foam comfort layers, from gel-infused memory foam to 100% natural latex. The high-loft, stretch-knit covers speak to the beds’ pressure-point-relieving comfort.
Symbol Mattress: New Luxury
Symbol Mattress augmented its high-end offerings with the J. Beckon collection (pictured). Retailing for $999 and $1,999, the two-bed collection features latex, copper-infused foam and zoned coils. The Richmond, Virginia-based company also introduced the Tommie Copper Performance Sleep collection in partnership with performance apparel brand Tommie Copper. Each mattress in the three-bed line offers support in areas that need it most — head and neck, shoulders, lumbar, hips and legs. Retailing from $999 to $1,499, the beds feature Tommie Copper’s Znergy fabric, which is infused with copper and zinc.
Seeing More and More CBD in Bedding
According to researchers at Harvard Medical School in Boston, cannabidiol, or CBD, holds promise for improving human health. CBD is one of two active ingredients derived from the cannabis plant (the one that does not yield a “high”). Research may one day show that CBD helps manage anxiety, insomnia or treat chronic pain, although to date, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration has approved only one CBD product, a prescription drug that treats two rare, severe forms of epilepsy.
But thanks to laws legalizing marijuana use in a number of states and the expanding legal cultivation of cannabis in the United States — including the hemp plant, which contains
almost no THC — CBD has become widely available and wildly popular, not just as a dietary supplement, but as an additive to consumer goods — even bedding.
At the Winter Las Vegas Market Jan. 26-30 at the World Market Center, we saw several new products containing CBD. These included mattresses and pillows with CBD oil used in fabric finishes or with CBD infused into foams. In addition, a handful of products contained hemp fiber or incorporated fabrics made with hemp yarn. BedTimes will dig deeper into the subject of CBD and sleep products in the May issue.