Perfecting your ensuite’s design and functionality, as well as adding sophistication is a goal for many home renovators, who desire their master ensuite to be an idyllic getaway after a hectic day, a sanctuary to unwind in and to be pampered in. According to Henley Homes, ensuites are taking on a spa-inspired feel, promoting an atmosphere of relaxation and tranquillity. Many people want their bathroom to feel like a resort or day spa – a personal retreat, a place to escape. The current trend is focused more on different finishes rather than colour.
Elevating your ensuite. Ensuites are usually timeless and neutral in colour and the focus is more on the materials and textures used – natural materials and finishes like marble, stone, timber, concrete. Floor to ceiling tiling is still popular in large format tiles. You can choose either a subtle patterned tile to use for both floor and walls; or one tile for the floor and a different tile for the walls. Using feature tiles on a full wall is the current design trend. Subway tiles are also popular – try laying them vertical and stacked or vertical and bricked rather than in a traditional horizontal pattern. Three dimensional tiles like “relief” pattern tiles and textured tiles add some depth and interest to bathroom design. When using tiles, think about the grout colour – this is just as important as the selection of what tile to use. Contrast the grout colour with the tile to create more of an impact or to highlight a feature. Choosing a matching grout colour blends in with the tiles and makes the floor or wall look seamless with a consistent colour and finish. No matter what the theme or colour palette, ensuites are filled with cold surfaces. Remember to add depth, interest and warmth with a timber vanity, some soft fluffy towels, decorative lighting, potted plants or freshly cut greenery.
Freestanding baths. With an open concept ensuite, a freestanding bath is often the main feature. A freestanding bath sitting on a podium or step with a floor-mounted spout adds dimension and offers a luxe feel. Baths come in all shapes and sizes so keep looking if you have a small space.
Keep it elegant and simple, functional and practical. Simple, uncluttered and minimal are the key ingredients to achieve that day spa feel. Storage is an important feature of any bathroom so vanities, recessed mirrored cabinets and open shelves are all important things to consider. Wall mounted or floating vanities create a feeling of space. Open shelves below or above vanities or tiled shelves in showers are great for storage or for showcasing personal items.
Showers. When it comes to showers, the bigger the better. Double showers with twin shower heads provide that day spa aesthetic. Rain head showers are often paired with a handheld shower rail.
Budget renovations. If you are on a budget, basins and tapware are the easiest ways to transform a bathroom. Vanitytop basins make a statement. Tapware becomes a feature when selected in a finish like matte black, brushed nickel, gunmetal or brushed brass. Remember to match showers, accessories, shower drains, waste drains and even door hardware to the same selected finish.
Other features. Other luxe features of ensuites are frameless shower screens; rain head showers; backlit mirrors; underfloor heating; and heated towel rails. Colour and atmosphere can be added with scented candles, storage baskets, towels and potted plants. Lots of light, preferable natural light, is important. Task lighting must be planned and designed with thought. Feature lights like decorative sconce lights, LED backlighting, pendants and undershelf lighting are stylish and create a mood. Technology and smart bathrooms are becoming the norm in new homes: Google Home; sensor activated toilets that are self-cleaning; seat warmers; integrated lights; and integrated speakers while you soak in the bathtub.
Expert commentary by Henley Homes Interior Designer, Rebecca Burrows.
Henley Homes [Melbourne]
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