Finnish Kitchen Brand Puustelli Opens Minneapolis Showroom
Minneapolis is the first U.S. location for the leading Scandinavian kitchen design company
by Jahna Peloquin (Images courtesy Puustelli USA)
Puustelli, a leading Scandinavian kitchen design company, has opened its first U.S. showroom in Minneapolis. The Finland-based company, which is considered the “Cadillac of kitchens” to Finlanders, is known for its sustainable, modern Scandinavian designs.
The showroom will feature five complete kitchen vignettes, including two large demonstration kitchens, a floor-to- ceiling fireplace along with a mudroom/laundry room/home office, and bathroom vignettes. Other brands represented in the Showroom include Miele, Fisher & Paykel, Blanco, Dekton, Warners’ Stellian, and Fireside Hearth and Home. The showroom will also have a flex lounge with a beverage center and a kid play area.
“Everything has a little bit of a different feel and look from your usual showroom,” says Björn Freudenthal, vice president of sales for Puustelli USA. “It’s intended to be a conversation starter.”
The approximately 1,900-square-foot space is located within a newly constructed office building at West Lake Street and James Avenue South, which is also home to Peterssen/Keller Architecture and Clinic Femina. “The beauty of this location is we have 15,000 vehicles traveling past daily,” Freudenthal. “Plus, it’s within walking distance to Lake Calhoun.”
Puustelli first became available in the United States in 2016 with the persistence of Puustelli USA president Mikko Juola. Juola, who at the time was a leading dealer of Puustelli in Finland, convinced the company to allow him to lead its expansion into North America. He started with Minneapolis, choosing the location for its strong Scandinavian heritage and design aesthetic, and because it’s one of the top 20 remodeling markets in the U.S.
Freudenthal said Puustelli’s kitchen systems provide an alternative to ultra high-end European furnishings at a lower price and a similar level of quality. The Miinus kitchen line features a biocomposite frame that doesn’t expand or contract in high-moisture areas. The company does not use volatile organic compounds or formaldehyde, which can impact indoor air quality, and its products are manufactured with the smallest environmental impact possible, 100 percent recyclable materials, and no endangered wood species. Puustelli is also extremely durable—its ceramic countertops are scratch-resistant, non-porous, stain-resistant, and can withstand more than 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
Unlike many showrooms, which are only available to builders and designers, Puustelli’s is open to the public. Its design team offers full-service kitchen and home cabinetry solutions for new homes and remodels as well as to DIY homeowners.
Showing how Puustelli kitchen systems function is another unique aspect of the showroom. It will host cooking demonstrations throughout the year—Mikko’s wife, Anna, is also the showroom's in-house chef—to show visitors the kitchens in action. “In most showrooms, the appliances don't work, there's no running water,” says Freudenthal. “To us, a kitchen is a system. The appliances all work together. You have to experience that so you can really get a sense of what you want in a kitchen.”
With its customizable designs, stylish Scandinavian designs, and commitment to sustainability, Puustelli fills a void in the marketplace between the high-end European cabinetmakers, such as Poggenpohl and Valcucine, and the starter-home sets from Ikea, Freudenthal says.
During the opening week of July 31 to August 6, Puustelli will be hosting daily events to introduce their Scandinavian design to consumers. The public is invited to stop by the showroom on Wednesday, August 2, for an open house event from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. featuring cooking demonstrations and a discussion about Scandinavian cuisine. (RSVP at puustelliusa.com.) The showroom is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, and by appointment.
1624 W. Lake St., Minneapolis, 612-405-2227, puustelliusa.com