“We just decided to go for it,” Kim Konigseder says. The longtime Liberty Coach interior designer is standing with her husband, Liberty managing partner and spatial engineering maven Kurt Konigseder, aboard a just-completed 2019 Elegant Lady at Liberty Coach headquarters in the far north suburbs of Chicago. The “it” she is referring to is nothing less than a masterpiece – a bumper-to-bumper, breathtakingly modern redesign of the world’s finest motorcoach.
It was a long time coming. As the creative force behind Liberty’s award-winning interiors since 1991, Kim and Kurt have probably designed more coach interiors than anyone in the Prevost bus conversion field. “We’ve been wanting to make this change for a long time,” she exclaims. One glance at Liberty’s “New Look” tells you why.
Clean, modern, light, airy, smooth, swanky – we have heard it described a hundred ways, but most importantly? It feels like home.
Creating that feeling required considerable thought and design – savvy, on Kim’s part as interior designer and Kurt’s as the design engineer. Modern is great, but it has a reputation for being cold and industrial. Both Kim and Kurt wanted to clean up the lines of the classic Liberty design, but make their “New Look” feel as warm and cozy as ever, if not more so.
A redesigned lighting scheme is central to this achievement. Giving the illusion of heightened ceilings that “just fade away” not only brightens the space, but quite literally elevates the coach. Kurt calls it a “glow” and that feels right on the money.
That glow is what illuminates miter-folded countertops with sharp edging, and continuous slabs with veining that looks like real stone. It shines on the wide variety of textures, tones and materials that Kim has chosen, giving the coach an incredible amount of dimension and detail. It is one thing to see it in pictures. In person, it is really something to behold.
When it comes to developing and refining her design approach, Kim is not that far off from the rest of us. Scrolling Instagram and combing the Internet for new and interesting makers, she finds and cultivates relationships with the multiple vendors that bring each coach to life. For Kim, it is not so much about brand names as it is about quality. If she (or a creatively-minded client) can dream it up, she can find the right person to craft it. Is this the future of design at Liberty Coach? Well, there will always be a place for the timeless, classic Liberty style that purists have come to know and love. Judging by the overwhelming reception to date – since its unveiling last spring, it has been virtually impossible to keep a “New Look” coach in inventory for more than a few days – the “New Look” of Liberty Coach is here to stay.