Planning a luxurious bathroom By Design: Consider structural factors first

BY DESIGN

then determine the layout and decoration.

November 19, 1995|By Rita St. Clair | Rita St. Clair,LOS ANGELES TIMES SYNDICATE

We're considering converting a spare bedroom into a luxurious bathroom, complete with a sunken spa-style whirlpool tub. Any suggestions before we start?

My first and most important recommendation is that you make sure the space has the structural capacity to handle a sunken tub. The conversion you envision requires more than just a good sense of color and design. A large whirlpool tub weighs a great deal, especially when it's filled with water.

You also need to consider basic factors such as the placement of the plumbing, heating and air-conditioning ducts.

Once you've engaged someone with expertise in these matters, you can turn your attention to the layout. Try to situate the sink so that light falls mainly on the side of your face when you're standing in front of the mirror. Back lighting should be avoided if possible. Install fixtures in the proper array to complement or compensate for the natural light entering the room through the windows.

To avoid drafts, make sure the tub is well away from doorways and windows. Placing it in an alcove is the best means of ensuring temperature control.

Everyone likes the idea of a sunken tub, I realize, but not many homes have enough space below floor level to accommodate such an installation. Adding a platform, as was done in the photo, can produce a similar effect.

In the setting shown, the lower white platform conceals duct work. The ceramic tile is arrayed in elegant patterns, and a scroll-type border runs all around the room, adding an Art Deco flavor.

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