By Charlyne Varkonyi Schaub
City & Shore Magazine
Bathroom design continues to get more spa-like and glamorous. Today’s hot-button items include soaking tubs with comfortable angles for relaxing, floating cabinets for a clean, contemporary look and stone lookalikes that are lighter weight and easier to clean. We look here at four residences on top of the trends transforming baths from blah to beautiful.
DESIGNERS: TOMAS FRENES AND JAMES SAGUI, IN COLLABORATION WITH THE OWNER
PHOTOGRAPHER: DAN FORER
An entrepreneur and art collector knew exactly the mood and design he wanted to create in his Delray Beach master bath.
“I wanted something that was comfortable, something that had a lot of space and pieces that were architectural in nature,” the owner says.
The 12-year-old home was totally gutted to make sure his vision was interpreted properly. All of the walls in his house are black – an idea he says shows off the artwork better than the typically white walls many designers use. He says dark walls make the light dissipate and white walls produce shadow.
The master bath, however, features only one piece of art – a limited edition collage by famed architect Richard Meier. The bathroom features a Philippe Starck soaking tub and Le Corbusier’s Grand Comfort chair. The owner purchased the large basket next to the chair at a Paris flea market. The floor is covered in 4 by 4-foot granite to reduce grout lines. The frameless door shower features body sprays and a conventional shower head.
“I am so into architects and their work,” the owner says. “Even though it is the bathroom I thought it would be more homey with the Le Corbusier chair.”
DESIGNER: SUSAN LACHANCE
PHOTOGRAPHER: ROBERT BRANTLEY
Susan Lachance created a focal point with a trio of rain showers in this Boca Raton home. Polished stainless steel tubes hang from a custom-designed platform that resembles a birthday cake with recessed lighting. Other water features are his and her showerheads and body sprays.
“The clients wanted something elegant, contemporary and trend setting,” she says.
To keep the design elegant, she selected a combination of marble and white glass mosaic. The windows, which have privacy because of the foliage and wall, are surrounded in black to provide extra punch.
“People today like to have a floating cabinet rather than one that goes straight to the floor,” she says. “It makes for a lighter look. The Caesarstone countertop has waterfall legs on each side.”
The oblong sink, which appears to be a shallow vessel, is actually deeper than it looks because it is recessed into the counter. Faucets are wall mounted for a cleaner look.
The lighting fixture, which appears to be inspired by the solar system, brings a little sparkle and art-like design to the room, which has his and her toilet rooms.
“We used an air tub because people find it healthier than a whirlpool, which is harder to clean,” she says.
DESIGNER: ANDY FISCHMAN
PHOTOGRAPHER: DARRYL NOBLES
An elegant quartz product resembling stone is the backdrop for the stylish and comfortable soaking tub in this Boca Raton master bath.
“We wanted to have a feature to set the backdrop for the tub,” Andy Fischman says. “We almost went with a slab of granite with a lot of color and movement, but the clients are more comfortable with a timeless look.”
Neolith, a quartz product that is lightweight and comes in slabs like natural stone, provides the backdrop for the soaking tub. The surface is easy to work with, durable and scratch-and-stain resistant. It makes a stylish room divider for an open shower that features his and her showerheads with thermostatic controls.
“You can book match the slabs and create the perfect backdrop that is subtle, timeless and sophisticated,” he says.
The freestanding Toulouse tub by Victoria + Albert is constructed of volcanic limestone and resins. It is easy to clean and has a high-gloss finish. Fischman says more clients are selecting soaking tubs rather than whirlpools and air baths that require a surround.
The design features his and her wall-mounted vanities, a popular option. These cabinets require additional reinforcement, which means the walls have to be removed so plywood can be added between the studs. The cabinetry has a linear silver acrylic finish that has a bit of a grainy appearance. Another luxury? A wall-mounted television.
DESIGNER: CECIL HAYES
PHOTOGRAPHER: JOHN STILLMAN
Cecil Hayes, known for her distinctive designs, created a powder room in this contemporary Boca Raton residence for clients who wanted a neutral palette.
The small (7-feet long by 5-feet wide) space has a custom-made vanity to make the room appear larger. Hayes’ company fabricated the cabinets with a textured pewter finish and white lacquer molding. They appear to be floating but are supported by a pair of 16-inch stainless steel legs. The center portion houses the organic-style sink’s plumbing and there are pullout drawers on either side. The countertop is white glass.
Although the wall covering looks like distressed stone, it’s actually pewter wallpaper that has an antique appearance.
“Up until three years ago designers were still using faux finishes but now the walls are simpler, usually white so the art can show. In the powder room we used paper because there was not enough room to have art be a part of the composition.”
“We like to have a wow factor because guests are only in it for a short time,” Hayes says.
Allied Kitchen & Bath, 616 W. Oakland Park Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-564-1611, alliedkitchenandbath.com.
Tomas Frenes Design Studio, 7610 NE Fourth Court, Suite #100, Miami, 305-576-6536.
Cecil’s Designers Unlimited, 6601 Lyons Road #C-4, Coconut Creek, 954-570-5843,
Susan Lachance Interior Design, 1001 Clint Moore Road, Suite 100, Boca Raton, 561-241-3800, susanlachance.com.
James Sagui (handmade wood furniture and sculpture), 820 25th St. #4, West Palm Beach, 561-833-0252, Jsagui.com.