Bathroom design has seriously evolved in the last decade. No longer are these spaces busy, high-traffic zones where messy drawers full of empty bottles spill out and harsh lighting causes stress. Instead, we're focusing on how design can make us feel, and crucially, how a bathroom can be designed as a space to relax and unwind. The quiet luxury trend is the epitome of this switch of mindset.
According to Artem Kropovinsky, founder of New York interior design studio Arsight, the quiet luxury bathroom should be a space that creates ‘serene spa vibes, integrate greenery, and showcase minimalism, which is an integral aspect of spa-like bathrooms.' The quiet luxury bathroom should be simple and stylish, with slender fittings and concealed storage spaces to project calm and tranquility. 'Use quality bath fittings to give it a touch of prestige too, and for extra indulgence, try a freestanding bathtub or a spa-like walk-in shower with multiple headers.'
In terms of color, the palette should be pared back and restorative. 'Color should be used carefully to create a sense of calmness,' says Artem. 'Light, unobtrusive color schemes or cold colors will further increase a sense of calm and spaciousness. The space should be enriched with textiles with layers of comfort and luxuries. These can be plush towels, richly textured bath mats, or even a soft robe near the bath.' To prove that "quiet luxury" is the optimum style for the modern bathroom, I've found 8 spa-like bathrooms that have been designed to promote relaxation.
1. This minimalist scheme with limewash walls
This bathroom design by Emily Lauren Interiors is a perfect example of the quiet luxury trend in action. The renovation included a total overhaul of the bathroom, with custom-designed features like an integrated bathroom sink, stone bench and walk-in three-piece shower, selecting natural and handmade materials throughout, as well as a mix of vintage and custom-made furnishings.
'Fine details can elevate a space and take it to the next level,' says Emily Brown of Emily Lauren Interiors. 'The bathroom's integrated basin seamlessly blends with the marble countertop. We also incorporated natural and handmade materials and embraced the character of patina-rich raw metals in the bathroom hardware.'
The walls and ceiling have been given texture with the application of limewash too which adds understated depth and creates a matt finish.
Finally, proper bathroom lighting is so important in every space and can really make or break an experience, especially when relaxation and luxury are so at the fore of the design. 'We strategically mix light sources, coupled with dimmers, creating an ambiance that defines luxury,' says Emily.
2. This pastel pink bathroom with luxurious marble
Quiet luxury, according to New York-based designer Katie Harbison, involves rich materials. For this reason, marble was key to this bathroom design, used with boldness to create a dramatic contrast against the micro cement walls. 'We fell in love with this slab of marble with its marble veining when on a sourcing trip in Italy, and as it is quite a statement piece, we wanted the balance of the selections to complement and enhance the vanity rather than fight with it,' says Katie.
In contrast, Katie kept the walls very clean and minimal, using a muted colored micro cement which offers some texture to surrounding surfaces without being too prominent. 'The overall palette is calming, yet the Breccia Viola marble provides an impactful and bold touch in both form and finish.'
3. This bathroom that integrates a home sauna
If your focus is on creating a spa-like space, why not bring the spa to your home like this bathroom by New York-based design studio, Studio Zung. More and more, homeowners are keen to explore holistic design in their homes, creating spaces that focus on health and wellbeing. 'We've crafted a sanctuary within a residence, drawing inspiration from the tranquility of modern Swedish saunas,' explains Tommy Zung, principal of Studio Zung.
'The spa bathroom design seamlessly blends the principles of Asian and Swedish influences. As you enter, a gentle walk to the middle invites you to cleanse, while a thoughtful choice between the left, leading to the sauna, or the right, guiding you to the steam room, creates a harmonious balance.'
4. This tranquil room with a view
Quiet luxury is also forging a connection to the great outdoors, harnessing nature's power to foster a relaxing atmosphere. This bathroom in a home in Utah does this to a tee. For designers at Susannah Holberg Studios, it is luxurious in that it creates a hotel-like experience.
'When the client walked into the finished bathroom for the first time she remarked that she always wanted a hotel bathroom and now she has that,' says Susannah Holberg.
'We think that quiet luxury is a great way to sum up what we were aiming for. To achieve a bathroom that felt like an escape from daily life, we focused on elements like a monochromatic color scheme, soft rounded shapes, and mixing clean but varying textures. We made sure not to include any elements that would be aesthetically provocative to someone in the space, but rather have the opposite effect and destimulate them.'
'As for the window, nothing is more calming for us than nature and this large round window looking out at the mountainside allows you to admire and feel like you are in nature, but from the comfort of your own home.'
5. This bathroom with floor-to-ceiling zellige tiling
Zellige tiles are a fabulous material to bring to your quiet luxury bathroom. With an uneven surface and subtle sheen, light bounces off these small bathroom tiles and brings a shimmering, pearlescent quality of light to your room. It's calming and reflective and can be quite mesmerizing in all colorways. This bathroom by Lorla Studio has perfectly used zellige, highlighting a cozy corner for the bathtub to snugly sit, and contrasting against lime plaster finish used throughout the rest of the bathroom.
'We created a spa-like feel in this bathroom by carving out a separate niche that is solely dedicated to this large soaker tub,' says Laura Hur, founder of Lorla Studio who created the above space.
'Creating a stand-alone moment for the tub allowed us to carve out a unique relaxation zone within the large footprint of this primary bathroom,' says Laura. 'The change in ceiling height and materiality, paired with comfortable touches like a marble ledge, small stool, and fresh greenery, all centered under large windows, creates a luxurious, spa-like feeling.'
6. This dreamy wet room
This bathroom is the perfect space to unwind, with this wet room separating two spaces in the bathroom with an internal glass door. For Jennifer Mehditash, founder of Mehditash Design and designer behind this Florida home, it's all about that separation that the glass-paneled door grants you.
'With views of the garden outside, this is the perfect spot to escape to at the end of the day,' says Jennifer. 'Whether for a warm bath, or a luxurious rain shower, the tonal palette and natural materials are that perfect tranquil backdrop, as you shut the door and allow for sense of calm and warmth to envelope you.'
7. This freestanding tub in the center of the room
A freestanding tub is often considered the epitome luxury, drawing a focus to the center of the room and inviting you to bathe. The bathtub in this home, designed by Luke Maloney takes the focal point of the room, emphasizing the main purpose of the space is for utter relaxation. While the fireplace isn't actually functioning, it gives the wall a focal point and a surface for extra decor, breaking up a white bathroom wall in need of some additional character.
8. This calming palette and terracotta tiling
Located in a historic Austin, TX neighborhood, the bathroom was in dire need of a complete overhaul and has been transformed into a quiet luxury retreat. Despite retaining the same floor plan, the designers at Emily Lauren opted to replace all materials and finishes, redesign the vanity, and refinish the original clawfoot tub. The tub inspired the rest of the room, with its soft curves being replicated in the simple shapes of the vanity and backsplash, which acts as a little ledge for a couple of candles and a vase.
'We selected Arabescato Corchia marble for the marble splash wall behind the tub and vanity countertops, as it serves as a stunning centerpiece that draws the eye naturally through the entire space.
'Farrow and Ball's paint was applied to the walls, tub exterior, and vanity. Lastly, unlacquered brass taps were installed, allowing the development of a natural patina with each use.'
Bathroom flooring is another aspect to focus on to enhance your quiet luxury mood. These terracotta tiles sourced from Clé Tile are the perfect solution, bringing a rustic feel that counters against the modern color scheme.
3 buys to bring a sense of quiet luxury to your own bathroom
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Oonagh is a content editor at Livingetc.com and an expert at spotting the interior trends that are making waves in the design world. Writing a mix of everything and everything from home tours to news, long-form features to design idea pieces on the website, as well as frequently featured in the monthly print magazine, she's the go-to for design advice in the home. Previously, she worked on a London property title, producing long-read interiors features, style pages and conducting interviews with a range of famous faces from the UK interiors scene, from Kit Kemp to Robert Kime. In doing so, she has developed a keen interest in London's historical architecture and the city's distinct tastemakers paving the way in the world of interiors.
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