Why Bathrooms are Becoming the Best Room in the Home

by TessaSchlesinger

By Tessa Schlesinger. Bathrooms have a long history, but they haven't changed that much. Yet, slowly, they are reverting back to the relaxation centers they used to be.

Bathrooms have quite a history, starting off in about 3000 BC with sacred communal baths, progressing through to the individual bath in about 1700 BC and arriving finally at the small, functional room it has been for the past few hundred years. Interestingly enough, when archeologists found the first individual bath at the Palace of Knossos in Crete, they discovered it was virtually identical in shape and plumbing to our baths of today. That said, the bathroom of today has, once more, morphed, for it moves into the realm of a personal room of relaxation providing everything from a spa through piped music and furniture, to a place to put a glass of champagne while you're soaking in bubbles of bliss in a white or earth color tub.

2013 vs the Roman Bathroom

Ancient Roman Bathroom

In the days of the Romans, it used to be the thing to go to the public baths, not only to clean oneself, but to socialize with others and to relax. A good 'bath complex' contained a cold pool, a warm pool, and a hot pool. The norm would be to spend time in each pool, gradually warming sore muscles and then go to the swimming pool and finish with a work out in the public exercise area alongside. Or, perhaps, they would do it the other way round. Romans went to the public baths every day and so it was very much part of their relaxation and health ritual.

Today bathrooms are once more returning to take central place in our lives. Not only have they become larger, but they now have room for a spa, some furniture, more storage room, speakers for the music you love, and a scale or other equipment we would like close at hand. As life becomes more stressful, this trend will probably continue.

Roman Bath

Clean Lines, Space Saving Vanities, with Tiny Decorative Touches

Bathroom Design in 2013

Every bit of space in the bathroom has to work in many different ways. It should have a spacious feel and items like closets and cabinets, the vanity, and a laundry basket should be designed in such a way as to miximise both their use and the amount of space they use. Rather than the plumbing taking up most of the space under the bathroom basin, it should be designed in such a way as to leave most of the cabinet space free for use.

Floating bathroom cabinets have become widely accepted. However, before installing one, take a look at what you wish to store inside the cabinets. The floating cabinet is attached to the wall without it touching the floor. This means two things - you can put shoes, scales, and other items below it, and you need to clean underneath it which can be awkward. If you wish to store heavier items in your cabinet, then floating storage is not such a good idea. Because the only means of support is the wall, it would put extra pressue on the wall, and over a period of time, cracks could appear.

Floating Bathroom Cabinet
Floating Cabinet
Floating Cabinet
Floating Cabinet for bathroom.
Modern Single Wall Mount Style Sink Vanity (Black) (20"H x 24.25"W x 18.9"D)

The Modern Single Wall Mount Style Sink Vanity brings a modern look to any bathroom with a sleek design and contemporary fixtures. The clean lines of the drawer pulls give this ...

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2013 Transitional style

What is transitional style?

As in other rooms of the home, transitional style continues to be the way to go. It is a blend of traditional and contemporary, with clean straight lines and curves leading the way. Colors are muted and neutral with grays, whites, and earth colors. Accents can be stronger colors to add some warmth. For the most part, though, the traditional style gives any room a highly functional, clean look.

If you're redoing a bathroom, you can get this look by painting the room all white, adding some beige and black trimmings to door handles, mirror frames, and other finishes. The rug shown is a perfect example of the transitional style and color.

Transitional colors for a bathroom or room rug
Transitional colors
Transitional colors
Transitional colors are neutral while shapes are square, rectangular, clean cut, and elegant.
Home Dynamix Optimum 11025-450 Black 3-Feet 7-Inch by 5-Feet 2-Inch Transitional Area Rug

From the stunningly contemporary colors to the soft antique tones, this area rug is beautifully detailed in every way. Power loomed of durable and easy to care for olefin yarns,...

$35.99  $25.47

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Bathroom lights

Chandeleurs in the Bathroom

Gone are the days when a round, white blob sat on on the ceiling and glared its blare at you. Now a Swarovski chandelier wouldn't be out of place in the bathroom. In fact, if the room is quite plain, then highly decorative lighting is all the more desirable. After all, if you're going to be lying in the bath, gazing up at the ceiling, why not look at twinkling stars?

Of course, if you install a dimmer so that that sparkling orb sheds more a softer light on you when you'd prefer to waft in bubbles and dream a little, thats' pretty good, too. Definitely, because the 2013 bathroom is also highly functional, it's important to have lights in other areas as well as the celing. The vanity needs to be well lighted and the same crystal theme can make its way here, too. Of course, for the ultimate luxury (or is it convenience), have some lights installed inside cabinets and closets so that your way is well lighted when you're looking for something you put there yesteryear.

Bathroom lights, these days, have an almost decadent Art Deco feel, as if it's all happening in the bathroom and not the ballroom.

Stylish Chandeleur

Chandeliers in bathroom
Chandeliers in bathroom
Tadpoles Four Bulb Chandelier, White

A beautiful 4 bu pound chandelier is the perfect finishing touch to any room even the powder room. This lovely vintage style metal framed chandelier has glass and acrylic beads ...

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TOPMAX First-rate Crystal Chandelier Lighting With Lampshade E12 6 Lights For Interior Decoration

Description Diameter: 60cm Height: 60cm The length of the necklace: 35cm Type: chandelier with lampshade Versions: 40W E14 x 6 (Embrace) Operating voltage: 110V - 240V Color: Cl...

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Art in the Bath

Bathroom Tiles

While bathrooms have always featured tiles in order to cope with wet floors and steam, tile art has become the highway to heaven. While clean lines and neutral colors can become stark when it is carried too far, it is the art that turns the 2013 bathroom into a pleasure palace - paradise to the eyes. Obviously, one cannot put in canvas or paper because it won't last long. So the thing to do is to use porcelain tiles with graphic prints. But before we get to the tile art, let's take a look at some tiling basics.

Explaining Tiles
A little word here from the days I used to be in the tiling business. Porcelain tiles are the top of the range and last forever. They are usually used for shopping centers. However, if it's a bit pricey, there are four different levels of ceramic tiles you can use. In South Africa, we used to label them P1, P2, P3. and P4. The P1 would have a lifespan of a year before the color went and the ceramic could be prone to cracking. The P4 had a lifespan of ten years. So go for the ceramic tile that has a guaranteed ten year lifespan. Of course, it will probably last a lot longer than that, but it's best to work with the best materials you can afford. Quality pays off!

Natural Materials
There's another aspect of the 2013 bathroom that comes into play. Natural materials have become very popular as they are eco-friendly. There are those who will use marble, granite, wood, and slate in tthe bathroom.

Marble stains very easily and is not a good tile to have in the bathroom. It's also a lot softer than granite. If you want a marble look, try to find a look-alike granite. Granite is much harder and doesn't stain as easily. Of course, you do need to keep these stones sealed with a good polish. This prevents them from absorbing liquids of various sorts. Slate is also a good stone for the bathroom and with its neutral (black, grey beige), you'll still be high fashion with the transitional style.

Lastly, wood is not particularly the best material to use on a bathroom floor, although, these days, they can be treated to withstand water damage. A better solution is to use a tile which has been desighted to look like wood. You wouldn't know the difference just by looking at it.

Graphic Art on Tiles
There are so many single tiles which have amazing little gems on them. However, did you know that you can buy six or twelve tiles and put them together in a photo picture in the shower stall? In the days when I used to decorate, that is what I used to do for my clients. It looks awesome. Just go for something that you will always love because you're going to be looking at it for a while! Incidentally, the big thing for tile decor for 2013 is Mother Nature. So your tiles should have streams, rocks, grass, flowers, the sea, etc. Of course, if you're not heavily into Mother Nature, rather go with something you'll love looking at for the next decade.

Ceramic Art Tile

Ceramic Art tile
Ceramic Art tile

Ceramic Art Tiles for Bathroom

Art Nouveau Reproduction Decorative Ceramic tile 365

Time left: 3 days, 15 hours
Current bid: $12.50  Place bid

12 x 18 Ceramic Tile MuraL Backsplash, Louis Tiffany Art- Hibi...

Time left: 2 weeks, 6 days
Current bid: $60.00  Place bid

6" X 6" Ceramic Accent Tile-Art Noveau White Swans

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Current bid: $15.99  Place bid

Bathroom Hedonism

Heated Towel Rails, Spa Bath, Underfloor Heating, and More

This is where the clever use of space comes in. You're going to need lots of it because you're going to be spending more than an hour or so in this super de luxe room. Firstly, your bath will have spa jets for ultimate relaxation and stressed muscles. Next, the floor will be heated so that you don't climb out of a hot bath onto a cold floor (yuk), your feet remain toasty warm. Your super-large, fluffy bath towel will be warm from hanging on a heated rail and after you've finished drying off, you might like to sit on the comfy chair, paint your nails, and, then, perhaps, just to finish off, take a quick shower to freshen up - again. Of course, this time, instead of the relaxing experience of the spa-bath, the color changing LED installed in the shower head will revitalize you, and you will just be rearing to go out on the town for the night!

Oh, did I tell you that there are now specail water proof speakers so that you can listen to your favorite music throughout your luxurious alone time.

Heating Towel Rack
Towel heating rack
Towel heating rack
Knox Freestanding & Mountable Towel Warmer & Drying Rack - 6 Bars - Aluminum Frame

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LCM Home Fashion 6-Bar Freestanding Towel Warmer, Drying Rack

Home Fashion towel warmer and drying rack is ideal for bathrooms-or for any other room in the home. Thanks to its versatile design you can use it as a freestanding or wall mount...

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Rich, decadent effects for your bathroom

Bathroom Accessories

You've got everything done. You have ample storage for your full beauty routine, a bath cum spa, a shower with color changing lights and a speaker to do a dizzy dance, rails to keep your towels warm and heated tiles to keep your feet from freezing. You're good to go.

Bathroom Accessories
One of the nicest things about anything plain is that you can pile on the bling. Take a plain dress, for instance. You can wear anything and everything and all it will do is set off the dress. It's the same thing with your bathroom. Yes, you've got the chandelier up there, but now it's time to look for soap dishes, robe hooks, toilet roll holders, tooth brush holders, and more.

With this one, I'm just going to find some glorious products that I think will work with a transitional bathroom and let you see if you agree... And, yes, if you catch me suggesting a more humorous product, just bear with me. I know that transitional is the thing; but I just can't help adding a touch of humor here and there. :)

Relax with bathroom luxuries
Bathroom luxury
Bathroom luxury
Yosoo 6 Piece Plastic Bathroom Accessory Set Luxury Bath Accessories Bath Set Lotion Bottles/toot...

Available in different colors: White, Black, Green,Red,Purple and Blue The Set includes 1 tumbler, 1 toothbrush holder, 1 soap dispenser, 1 soap dish, 1 mini trash bin and 1 toi...

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Lagute 5PCS Vintage Classic Luxury Bathroom Bath 3D Decor Accessories Collection Set for Hotel & ...

This Lagute bathroom accessory set is created by artisans who specialize in a particular material or craft, making it vintage classic and luxury. Its colorful 3D floral designs ...

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Bath the Night Away!

Bath Delights

Okay, I'm not even going to attempt to tell you how to spend your bath nights, but with a bathroom like this, you can truly have a decadent bathing experience every night of your life. Also, because it's so large and has sufficient storage for everyone, there's no reason for it to be messy anytime soon. Its clean lines makes it easy to get into corners to keep clean and tidy. You'll notice the moment something is out of place.

There is only one problem with this bathroom. And that's that everybody else might be so busy using it that you never get a chance to use it yourself!

Updated: 08/27/2013, TessaSchlesinger
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?


blackspanielgallery on 07/20/2015

Interesting. It is the important, but not often thought of, room.

MBC on 09/26/2014

Yes, every home should have a luxurious bath.

TessaSchlesinger on 08/26/2013

jptanbe, we all can! :)

jptanabe on 08/26/2013

I do like the idea of the bathroom as a place of relaxation and luxury. Unfortunately mine is very small so has to focus on being functional. But I can dream!

TessaSchlesinger on 08/24/2013

You and me both! ) I've never liked the toilet in the same room as the bathroom.

AngelaJohnson on 08/24/2013

If I was to design my bathroom, I'd have the toilet in a completely different small room and put the tub and shower in another larger room and make that room a fun and relaxing place to unwind.

TessaSchlesinger on 08/23/2013

Maggie, I think one of the heated towel racks could work at multiple tasks! :)

MaggiePowell on 08/23/2013

Nice.. very nice... one of those heated towel racks would fit perfectly in my world.

TessaSchlesinger on 08/23/2013

Steve, not really.When I used to be in the decorating field in South Africa, it was quite the thing for architects to build bathrooms that had a door leading into an open air room and for there to be an open air shower. Also some homes had a garden inside! :)

steve_gould on 08/23/2013

I like to see planting in the bathroom, so it feels like you are bathing in a natural lake. Just me I suppose!

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