On further reflection

Using glass in novel ways has transformed the look and functionality of this bathroom
The view of a contemporary bathroom of a bathroom, countertop, floor, home, interior design, room, window, gray, black
The view of a contemporary bathroom of a house

With its watery, translucent look, glass has long been a favourite material for bathrooms. But today it is being used in new and innovative ways. As well as adding a strong design element to a bathroom, it can also lighten a room and make it appear more spacious.

The bathroom featured on these pages highlights a variety of ways glass can be incorporated. The owner, who planned the room from an initial design concept by architect Brent Hulena, says she was influenced by the sleek, minimalist look of commercial design projects and the desire to lighten a formerly dark space.

"As this is a downstairs bathroom for the teenagers in the family it was important to introduce plenty of light," she says. "Using glass not only helps achieve this, it also reflects the colour of the pool outside."

The view of a bathroom with back painted architecture, bathroom, ceiling, daylighting, floor, flooring, glass, home, interior design, light fixture, lighting, room, wall, brown
The view of a bathroom with back painted glass panels separating the toilet and shower area

The new room replaces an old bathroom that was raised a step above the ground floor. This room was completely gutted and structural alterations made to accommodate the new room.

Back-painted glass lines the walls around the bath tub, below sill level. A thick slab of glass also forms the bath surround, its translucent quality adding to the watery feel. The vanity unit has a glass top and splashback, similar to the walls.

Translucent glass also features on the other side of the room, where it forms a wall and a door that separate the toilet and shower. As well as allowing light into these areas, it provides privacy.

The detail of a toilet and hand basin bathroom, ceiling, interior design, lighting, room, sink, wall, brown, gray
The detail of a toilet and hand basin

To contrast the sheen of the glass, American walnut veneer was specified for the cabinetry a material also featured in a new kitchen on the same floor. The cabinetry's cantilevered position helps create a spacious look as does the large mirror. Concealed storage cabinets are built into the mirror on both sides. Plumbing is also concealed behind a false wall below the cabinet.

Aug 23, 2004

Credit list

Owner and Jen Pack
Duravit and Philippe Starck from LG Carder
Vola from LG Carder
Window treatments
Papakura Joinery
Hinuera stone from Firth, laid by Davidson Bricklayers
Halogen from ECC
Duravit from LG Carder
Door knobs
Halliday & Baillie
Vanity cabinetry
Lindon Harris of Johannes Erren Cabinetmakers
Bamberger from LG Carder
Solid glass around bath and basin
Euroglass Systems
Hot water systems
Rinnai Infinity Natural Gas
Backpainted glass panels
Euroglass Systems
Manrose from LG Carder
Heated towel rail
DCS from LG Carder
Wet-Seal NZ
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