Build a bet­ter bath­room

NT News - Real Estate - - Realestate - ROBYN WIL­LIS

We’re con­sid­er­ing a bath­room ren­o­va­tion but we’re stuck on how best to plan it. Is there a logic to bath­room de­sign? Some­times plan­ning a bath­room can be more about fit­ting all the es­sen­tials in rather than how to make it work best for you. But award-win­ning bath­room de­signer Darren Gen­ner (pic­tured) from Mi­nosa De­sign says func­tion should al­ways be the first con­sid­er­a­tion.

“A lot of peo­ple over­com­pli­cate spa­tial plan­ning in a bath­room,” Darren says. “A bath­room gen­er­ally has four cor­ners so peo­ple think it needs to be the toi­let on one wall and shower on the other but we try to think more about func­tions rather than the room.”

Giv­ing thought to the way your day unfolds and what ac­tiv­i­ties you do reg­u­larly in the bath­room is key to work­ing out an ideal lay­out, says Darren.

“Bath­rooms are where you can wash away a bad day or start fresh with a new day,” he says. “You don’t want the toi­let placed at the back of the bath­room be­cause you have to walk through the whole space to get there. Gen­er­ally, it’s bathing at one end, the basin at the other and the toi­let in the mid­dle.”

Dou­ble show­ers are prov­ing pop­u­lar th­ese days and Darren says that makes a lot of sense dur­ing the busy morn­ing rush. How­ever, he says, a dou­ble basin isn’t al­ways so nec­es­sary. “If the clash is be­cause of two peo­ple com­ing into the bath­room at the same time, the basin is not the prob­lem, it’s the mir­ror,” Darren says.

“Elec­tri­cals and wa­ter sources are not a great com­bi­na­tion so you’re bet­ter off with a bench­top with a big mir­ror and a sin­gle basin.”

But if there’s one bath­room es­sen­tial no one wants to see, it’s the toi­let. Darren says it’s worth think­ing a lit­tle cre­atively about where to place the most im­por­tant seat in the house.

“No one wants to see the toi­let in an open-plan bed­room suite,” he says. “If the space is big enough you can put a wall in the mid­dle of the room with the basin on one side and the shower or toi­let be­hind it so that you can have two peo­ple in there at once with­out im­ping­ing on their pri­vacy.”

Be­yond the ba­sics, most of us are look­ing for a sense of com­fort and even lux­ury in our bath­rooms. This has led to the ris­ing pop­u­lar­ity of free­stand­ing baths. But Darren says that they’re not for ev­ery­one. “Aus­tralians have a real af­fec­tion for free­stand­ing baths but if you can’t clean around it, it’s not the best idea be­cause the dust that col­lects goes to mould fairly quickly,” he says.

Large for­mat tiles are pop­u­lar with clients look­ing to min­imise grout lines, al­though mo­saic tiles still fea­ture heav­ily, es­pe­cially as a fo­cal point on walls.

On the other hand, he says, un­der­floor heat­ing has prac­ti­cally be­come a stan­dard in­clu­sion for many peo­ple look­ing for a lit­tle warmth un­der­foot. “It’s al­most preprinted into the con­tract,” he says. “Peo­ple also want silent ex­trac­tor fans – we want ev­ery­thing calm and serene.”

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