Life & Style Weekend - - MAGAZINE / HOME - WORDS: TRACEY HORDERN .......................

Trav­el­ling has opened my eyes to the im­pact of too much min­i­mal­ism and overly clever de­signs. Mostly I no­tice this quirk in bath­rooms of ho­tels and Airbnbs. Nat­u­rally ev­ery bath­room is dif­fer­ent, as is the de­signer tap­ware. The smartest ho­tel also had the most frus­trat­ing shower I have ever had. Imag­ine fac­ing three taps, with­out the slight­est hint of which one was the pres­sure, the hot or the cold. One red dot, per­haps even a blue one as well, would have helped. Some­times I think de­sign­ers can be too clever. This es­pe­cially ap­plies to overly sleek min­i­mal­ist de­signs. I would be more im­pressed if their de­signs came with clues, rather than a smug, aus­tere de­sign. An­other city, an­other ho­tel bath­room. This time it was a seam­less bath­room floor (with no drain) lead­ing to the shower space. Yes, it looked great, but even with the shower door and bath­room door closed, the shower cre­ated a river from the bath­room to the car­peted bed­room. Nat­u­rally that’s a de­sign fail and pos­si­bly ex­pen­sive in the long-term, but again, I imag­ine the de­sign was sold as to cre­ate a sleek and con­tem­po­rary space. I’m not say­ing I don’t love sleek, con­tem­po­rary de­signs, but some prac­ti­cal­ity has to count for some­thing, oth­er­wise it re­ally is style over sub­stance – an in­creas­ingly weird, First-world phe­nom­e­non.

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