Bath Showcase: Bathroom Bonanza
Today’s bathrooms continue to become personal retreats — relaxing sanctuaries where one can refresh and recharge while showering or bathing.
This Londonderry family called on designer Kathleen Costello of Granite State Cabinetry in Bedford to renovate their kitchen and dining room in 2021, doubling its size. Delighted by the outcome, they embarked more recently on not one, but two bathroom makeovers as well as a laundry room/bath refresh. Whitney Nelson, also of Granite State Cabinetry, tackled the design challenges of creating a dream master bath for the parents, and a bathroom space that would meet the needs of their four daughters, ages 11 to 21. Whitney also updated the look of the downstairs combination laundry room/bath and improved the room’s overall efficiency.
“The adults yearned for a master bath that was their own personal escape space,” Whitney explains. “They wanted a soaking tub, a rain shower, double sinks and just a beautiful, private area to unwind in. The challenge was that the existing bathroom was very small. In order to fulfill their wishes, we took out a second hallway bathroom and closet, and added this space to the existing master. The space was still a bit long and narrow, but we were able to make it work.”
Whitney and her team created a “wet room” at one end of the bath. Here, behind glass doors, are the soaking tub and a rain shower “with every type of shower experience,” such as pulse, massage, mist and a drenching spray. The tub also has a shower fixture. Outside of the wet room is the vanity with dual sinks.
To save space, built-in stained maple cabinets line the walls and contain towels and toiletries.
Gray walls — “Crushed Ice” by Sherwin Williams” — make the space seem larger and brighter, and are a clean counterpoint to the dark cabinetry. In the rain shower, the back wall features white tiles in a chevron pattern, which adds texture and interest, while the side walls are a rich, warm greige — a gray/beige tone — that captures the essence of standing in the rain. The inset shampoo niche is tiled in a brown, gray and white mosaic. Honeyed bronze fixtures, from the lights to the mirror and the drawer pulls, warm the space.
Of the creamy white floor with streaks of gold and brown, Whitney says, “It’s porcelain tile that looks like Calacatta marble. The streaks pick up the hues of the fixtures and cabinets.”
The completed room satisfies the clients’ every need. “This bath is just the escape they wanted,” says the designer. “It’s their own private spa retreat.”
Just for Girls
With the parents all set with their spa-like new bath, it was time for Whitney to tackle creating a bathroom to meet the needs of four young women. Like their parents, the girls had a wish list, which included a soaking tub, shower and two sinks. With careful planning, Whitney was able to fulfill all their wishes. The tub was positioned at one end of the room, with adjacent built-in shelving for linens. The shower was placed at the other end, and two vanities with sinks line the walls in between.
The color palette was designed to resonate with both the younger and older girls — pretty, but not too fanciful, and with a hint of sophistication. Whitney again used lots of white and brought in pale blue and gray accents. Playful stripes highlight the shower stall, and blue-dotted tiles form a backdrop for the soaking tub. The vanities are done in pale blue with cool white tops, while the porcelain tile floor is a white and gray blend. The girls’ mother selected the scalloped mirrors and crystal light fixtures to add a bit of glam. Whitney echoed the scallop motif in the shampoo niche tiles.
“This is a bathroom that will grow with the girls,” she says. “Everyone has space to get ready, and they love that the room feels like them.”
Laundry Room Refresh
“The original layout had a lot of wasted space, making the room not as efficient as it could be,” says Whitney. “We were able to create storage space above the washer and dryer, and also add a counter over those units, which comes in handy when prepping laundry or folding clothes. We also brought in a larger vanity, which boosts storage.”
While the appliances are navy blue, the space is luminous thanks to pearlescent wall tiles, a white vanity and floor tiles whose white–gray swirls echo Calacatta marble.
The room opens into the pool area, making it very convenient for getting a head start on laundry after pool parties and allowing guests to use the amenities without traipsing through the home.
The family loves the new spaces and Kaizer, their German shepherd, clearly approves as well.