File this in the category of extreme optimism, but I have recently found unexpected beauty and comfort in plumbing fixtures.
First, there was my introduction to the P.E. Guerin brand. Founded in 1857 by French immigrants, P.E. Guerin is now owned and operated by a fourth-generation member of the Guerin family. According to the company’s website, it is the oldest decorative hardware firm in the country and operates the only metal foundry in New York City. A four-story flagship store in Greenwich Village showcases exquisite furniture hardware and plumbing fixtures, with metalwork–and prices–to make you swoon. While I don’t expect to shell out thousands of clams on a decadent dolphin-shaped lavatory set (like the one pictured here, from peguerin.com), it’s comforting to know someone’s still out there lavishing artistic attention on oft-overlooked appliances.
Less extravagant but possibly even more dazzling than the artistry at P.E. Guerin was my recent encounter with Delta Faucets.
In attempting to figure out options with a leaky kitchen sink set, I called Delta’s toll-free number and launched into my sob story about frozen pipes and…
Before I could even get to the tearful finale, where I was hoping to finagle a discount on a replacement, the man on the phone asked me for the sink’s serial number and my mailing address so he could ship out a new one–for free.
At the risk of selling past the close or looking a gift horse in the mouth, or whatever is the appropriate idiom, I asked him why the transaction was so easy. He explained simply, “Delta has a lifetime warranty.”
And now they have a lifetime customer.