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Warm, natural toned finishes give this bathroom retreat a biophilic feel – crowned with a cascade of greenery from a bespoke planter

Designed by Kelly Gammie, Rarebirds Interiors

From the designer:

Brief and challenging elements

Owner: “Make me a bathroom that I never want to leave.” 

Our executive owner desired to come home to a get-away-from-it-all bathroom space. 

“I want the hanging gardens of Babylon to stare at went I’m soaking.” 

Other than these particular requests, our owner wanted to see what our creativeness would produce.

This was a large space for an Auckland bathroom renovation but with quirky and challenging elements to be tackled – a large awkwardly shaped window that needed to stay, along with a skylight and third smaller window inconveniently placed. 


As the owner didn’t want to interfere with the exterior building envelope, we needed to work around the existing placements. 

The other aspect that presented as challenge to solve was the extreme ceiling raking, leaving one side at a height of 3800mm and the opposite 2200mm. 

Without a good design solution, the unbalanced aesthetic of this bathroom would remain.

Design solution

The new design flows out from the considered spatial planning, accommodating the existing window placements. 

A custom floor-mounted vanity in warm fluted oak spanning just over 2000mm allows two individual makeup /grooming areas with pill shaped cabinet mirrors opening to lit storage. 

They also frame the small traditional window and open up the central area of the vanity featuring a wide basin. 

Created from the same travertine as the benchtop, a feature shelf within the basin provides the perfect position for soap and other products.

A hinged oak slated screen continues the warm, natural biophilic element and serves to hide the awkward window while creating a wee bit of privacy to the shower area. 

Of course, a full glass panel sits in behind the timber to protect it from three live finish, brass shower fittings.

Showering in this open space and looking out over the adjoining lushness outside is a joy for the owner. 

From both the shower area or the organically shaped stone bath, the “hanging garden of Babylon” can be enjoyed day or, via subtle lighting, at night.

The layering of biophilic design elements continues into the selection of warm toned textured moonstone tiles. 

Their surface can be interpreted as a moonscape or a soft pebbled beach. 

Installed in a herringbone lay on the floor and off set on the walls, these tiles help create the gentle sanctuary feel of this bathroom.

A cascade of greenery

A cascade of greenery from the bespoke planter positioned on the higher wall creates both the requested hanging garden and creates symmetry to the heights of the room, removing the previous void with leafy loveliness.

Credit list

Vanity hardware
Blum soft close Legrabox
Basin
Custom stone inset into benchtop – Lineastone
Taps/shower fittings/accessories
Progetto Buddy X, in Natural Brass, from Plumbline
Toilet/bidet
Vitra, from Franklins
Wallcoverings
Moonstone ceramic tiles, in an off-set lay, from Global Tiles
Underfloor heating
Warmup
Awards
Trends International Design Awards (TIDA) Bathrooms – Highly Commended
Vanity cabinetry
Rarebirds Interiors custom oak, panelled
Benchtop
Como travertine, from CDK Stone
Bath
Apaiser
Shower stall
Custom Rarebirds-designed oak shower screen with glass panel
Flooring
Moonstone ceramic tiles, in a Herringbone lay, from Global Tiles
Ventilation
Schweigen
Blinds
Custom Plantation Shutters
Photography
Kelsie Barley

Story by: Trendsideas

02 Jun, 2024

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