Divide and rule – modern bathroom features tiled zones

Contemporary and clean-lined, this master ensuite makeover achieves a strong visual presence thanks to elegant choices of tones and tilework

​​​​​​​An open shower stall, backed in metallic, large-format architecture, bathroom, bathtub, building, ceiling, floor, flooring, furniture, home, house, interior design, material property, plumbing fixture, property, real estate, room, sink, tap, tile, gray, white
​​​​​​​An open shower stall, backed in metallic, large-format tiles sits alongside a vanity zone backed in cigar-shaped white wall tiles with aged edges in this ensuite rethink.

Even when you can see at a glance what’s what in a bathroom, having zones denoted by tone or tile adds to the overall visual aesthetic.

This modern master ensuite by Michael Folk forms part of the architect’s comprehensive refurbishment of a classic, double-storey federation home with spectacular harbour views.

“The bathroom replaces a smaller ensuite added in the late 1980s that had been showing its age in terms of finishes and wear and tear,” says Folk. “The owners’ brief was to replace this with a contemporary and luxurious retreat.”

In response, he played with the linear layout of the available space, delineating various zones by a different choice of wall tile.

​​​​​​​Pride of place – for this master ensuite architecture, bathroom, bathroom sink, bathtub, black, floor, flooring, home, interior design, jacuzzi, material property, plumbing fixture, property, room, sink, tap, tile, black, white
​​​​​​​Pride of place – for this master ensuite by architect Michael Folk a sculptural Victoria & Albert freestanding tub, matching the twin vanity basins in the same design family, is backdropped by matt black wall tiles.

Entry into the ensuite from the also reworked master bedroom is directly opposite the central double vanity. The latter features sculptural, two-tone basins which are offset by the dark charcoal-veined Caesarstone benchtop atop a charcoal timber veneer floating vanity cabinet.

Mirror-fronted cabinets above the feature vanity are interspersed with chrome Art Deco-style wall lights. The two wall cabinets, sconces and vanity are set off with elegant hand-made cigar-shaped white tiles with aged grey edges.

To the right of the entry – at the rear of the bathroom – is the generous twin shower zone, clad in large-format, metallic charcoal wall tiles. To keep this area clean-lined, crisp and modern, the shower stall has inbuilt recesses for soaps, frameless glass screens and no door.

Looking the other way, the black and white freestanding oval bath matches the basins and  takes pride of place under the window, which accesses water views.

The matt black tiles behind the curvaceous tub help delineate the bathing area and bookend the dark tiles at the opposite end of the room.

​​​​​​​For this master, the cathedral ceiling of the apartment, architecture, bed, bed frame, bed sheet, bedding, bedroom, building, ceiling, comfort, daylighting, floor, flooring, furniture, hardwood, home, house, interior design, living room, loft, mattress, property, real estate, room, suite, table, wall, wood flooring, gray
​​​​​​​For this master, the cathedral ceiling of the main bedroom was re-engineered and partially rebuilt so that the bed could be relocated to improve harbour views. In addition, existing niches were furnished with upholstered daybeds and storage.

The balance of the wall tiles are in the same flannel toned, travertine-look tiles as the floor. This tile offers the luxurious look of stone without the upkeep that comes with natural stone.

“Essentially, the palette of white, grey and metallic charcoal tiles is warmed and anchored by the taupe tones of the benchtop,” says Folk.

“The stone-look benchtop also complements the home’s beautiful timber floors, which we varnished as part of the renovation.”

The adjacent master bedroom was reworked, too, with the addition of niche daybeds, a walk-through wardrobe and a change to high ceilings.

Credit list

Michael Folk and Ignacio Pistone, Michael Folk Architects and Interiors
Vanity cabinetry
Navurban Blackheath Timber Veneer, by Eyre Joinery
Bath and basin
Victoria & Albert, from Domaine Bathroom Centre
Shower fittings
Tondo showerhead from Parisi; Gessi Gocia shower mixers, from Domaine Bathroom Centre
Icon, from Sydney Tap and Bathroomware
LED downlights; Carlisle Cougar Wall Lights from Light Up
Hot water systems
Rheem Instantaneous Gas
Shaun Taylor
Turbine Grey Caesarstone
Gessi Gocia basin mixers, from Domaine Bathroom Centre
Caroma Urbane Compact – Invisi Series
Mfvi, Hdva, Etma85, Cesi Bianco Lucido Tiles, from Cerastone
Fantec, from Lightup
Trends International Design Awards (TIDA) Bathrooms – Winner

Story by: Charles Moxham

Photography by: Carla McNab (BWRM), I Pistone and M Dorin

15 Dec, 2019

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