Dream New Zealand bathroom blogpost

6 Tips for Designing the Perfect New Zealand Bathroom

Escape to the Bathroom

The bathroom is your escape — it’s your personal oasis and potentially the only room in your home that you can safely lock and retreat to and escape the chaotic world outside.

The bathroom is evolving into a place that is not only functional and practical but also a place where you can relax, unwind and soak away the stresses of the day, however, the bathroom is very often the smallest space in the home despite there being so much going on in there.

For this reason, designing the perfect bathroom can seem like a daunting task at first — it needs to be practical and functional yet has to be a place where you can unwind and enjoy.

“Bathrooms are becoming so much more than a room that takes care of a function,” says Brian Johnson, principal, Collaborative Design Architects, Billings, Mt. “I compare it to how a TV room has evolved into a home theatre with surround sound.”

Whether you are renovating or building a new bathroom, here are 6 tips for designing the perfect New Zealand bathroom.

Maximise the Space

Every bathroom has to deal with the same issues (such as plumbing, drainage and ventilation) but the vast majority of home designers also have to tackle the issue of working with a limited space.

A bathroom floor plan usually falls into a one-, two– or a three-wall layout.

The one-wall layout is a basic design that lines the toilet, sink and shower along one wall and is typically the most cost-effective design — but it’s also the most limiting.

For more flexibility think about a two-wall design. The toilet and sink can be plumbed on one wall and the bathtub and shower plumbed on the other.

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The three-wall layout is the most complicated but versatile and could well provide the perfect solution for your dream design. This layout may also be a necessity for complicated rooms that aren’t the typical square or rectangular shape.

Working with experts in bathroom design, such as DL Kitchens & Cabinetry, will help you avoid costly mistakes and provide you with the best advice on which layout would suit your space.

Bathtub Feature Piece

Baths are the natural focal point of a bathroom and have a powerful impact on the overall style of the space. If your space allows, a freestanding tub with ornate decorations or sharp modern lines can resemble an artistic sculpture and set the mood for the whole bathroom.

If you opt for a whirlpool or a soaking tub you may decide to go in the direction of a platform bath whereby the tub drops into a case-like structure. The exterior is typically tiled or sculpted from marble, limestone or other waterproof material that matches the surrounding interior design of the space.

If comfort and style is the aim of the game (and it should always be) then opt for a bathtub with a raised back to lean against while you are soaking away the stresses of the day.

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The Spa Shower

The spa shower is the perfect option to really encapsulate the luxury spa/resort vibe for your dream bathroom design. Shower heads come in a variety of shapes and sizes serving a multitude of functions but the most contemporary and modern option is the ceiling-mounted rain showerhead that soaks you from above.

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Body spray jets (which are usually vertically aligned) are smaller shower heads that crisscross and provide you with a water massage for the ultimate luxurious shower experience.

For added functionality, a handheld showerhead is a great idea to include for washing your hair, rinsing off and even washing the shower unit down after use. It is also the perfect solution if your space is limited and you do not have enough room for a freestanding or whirlpool bathtub.

To complete the look, opt for bespoke water-proof materials to cover walls, ceiling and floors that match the rest of your bathroom space and incorporate frameless glass doors to showcase the spa shower’s stunning interior.

Set the Mood with Cabinetry

There are generally two categories when it comes to the groups of cabinets to feature in your dream New Zealand bathroom.

Firstly you have the stand-alone, feature vanity which contains the sink, a nice and spacious countertop and usually a few draws to place all your toiletries in. The second group consists of all the other bathroom cabinetry that you may feature such as free-standing storage towers, medicine cabinets, or over-the-toilet units.

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Bathroom cabinetry merges practicality and functionality with the design style you are trying to achieve. “Cabinets affect the look and feel of the entire room,” says Meriam Reed, co-owner of a DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen franchise in Naples, Fla. “They set the tone for your bathroom makeover.”

Modest single-sink vanity cabinets are a thing of the past as interior designers look to a host of options such as lavish double-sink vanities with custom storage hutches and wall-mounted cabinets. The days of simply picking out a medicine cabinet and considering that as “job done” are long gone.

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Your bathroom cabinetry’s ultimate goal is to store your bathroom toiletries and products.

By working with experts in cabinetry such as DL Kitchens & Cabinetry in Auckland, you can rest assured that you will not only have your dream New Zealand bathroom fitted with stunning and bespoke cabinetry that sets the tone of your space, but their work will ensure you can easily store and organise the things you use every day (such as electric tooth brushes, hair dryers and perfumes) in a way that is innovative and practical.

“In reality, it’s more complicated to design a bathroom than it is a kitchen,” muses Lenia Pilkonis, an interior designer based in Atlanta, U.S.A, “because you’re not only working with a smaller space, but because almost everything you touch has either water, electrical and/or drainage issues.”

To make your bathroom renovation or new build a breeze it is a good idea to consider hiring a kitchen and bath specialist to help guide your project.

Incorporate a Bathroom Lighting Plan

Bathroom lighting is another crucial element to think about when you’re planning on designing your dream bathroom. The correct lighting can set the entire mood of the space but, yet again, making the vanity or toilet area too dark is impractical.

Ideally, the mirror should feature two wall-mount lights either side of it at about eye level and a third light above the mirror to illuminate your face and eliminate shadows.

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For general bathroom lighting use ceiling-mounted fixtures that can be adjusted by a dimmer to really give off a relaxing vibe. Accent lights can spotlight your collection of perfumes, colognes, art or an architectural feature and contribute sparkle and mood.

Bathroom Luxuries

For the ultimate in-home retreat include luxurious features such as underground radiant heating to take the chill off stone and tile floors. This feature will also make your bathroom a place you will want to linger and enjoy, especially in the colder months.

Incorporate a sound system so you can get ready in the morning to the sounds of your favourite music or set the scene with relaxing ambient tones before you drift away from the stresses of the day.

More and more designers are incorporating elements into a bathroom that would traditionally be found in other parts of the home such as TV units, gas fires and even whiskey bars.

When you’re designing your dream New Zealand bathroom use these 6 tips for a little added inspiration.

Contact Auckland-based DL Kitchens & Cabinetry for expert advice and custom-built, masterfully crafted, bespoke cabinetry to ensure your bathroom is finished to the highest possible standard.