One way mirror doubles as a shower screen in this large master suite

Designer Mark Gacesa uses materials, motifs and design elements to connect this master suite's bedroom, dressing room and bathroom

All is not as it seems in this ceiling, floor, flooring, hardwood, house, interior design, laminate flooring, real estate, wood, wood flooring, gray, brown
All is not as it seems in this master bathroom by designer Mark Gacesa of Ultraspace. Stairs to the bath appear to float above the floor, while the glass between the shower and vanity acts as one-way mirror.

Five-star hotel and resort suites have become a major influence on how we design our own bathrooms. The owners of this new home travel frequently so when planning the house with designer Mark Gacesa they asked for a master suite that was equal to, or better than, anywhere they had stayed when on their journeys.

Gacesa's response more than met that request, but also produced a space with an impressive sense of continuity, complete with design features that push the boundaries of what we expect in a master suite.

Key to the success of the project is the integration of the three zones bedroom, dressing room and bathroom.

"The entire suite connects through the use of materials and design elements," says Gacesa. "Although this is a big space, it flows beautifully and feels intimate."

One way this is achieved is through the thick bulkhead that forms the ceiling of the central dressing room, and projects over the shower and into the bathroom on one side, and above the bed on the other.

Beneath the bulkhead in the bedroom, the wall is clad in Hosowari porcelain tile, giving a highly textured effect similar to stacked stone. This tile wraps around to the entrance of the dressing room and then reappears in the shower.

Antique Tuscan glass sandwiched between Corian sheets forms architecture, home, house, interior design, window, brown
Antique Tuscan glass sandwiched between Corian sheets forms this make-up counter. The same materials are used for the wall hung cabinets, which also feature thermoformed Corian handles with a routered pattern.

Materials for the bed plinth and bedside tables are also used in the bathroom, as is the floating effect Gacesa created.

Another design element established in the bedroom is the fret pattern seen in the central bedhead panel. Here it is formed from a bronze frame, with padded black suede inserted to give a relief effect.

A central cutout in this panel allows distant mountain views from the dressing room, while other cutouts in the bulkhead above the bed and in the dressing room ceiling highlight the fret pattern and maintain a sense of the room's full height.

All of these elements are carried through to the bathroom itself, says Gacesa.

"One of the owners likes to read in the bath with a drink and enjoy the view, so I wanted to create a setting for this," he says.

The tub is encased in a plinth made of the same marble as the floor, and sits on a mirrored base. This continues the floating effect, emphasised by lighting, that was seen in the bedroom.

This master suite is like a luxury self-contained ceiling, floor, flooring, interior design, real estate, room, gray
This master suite is like a luxury self-contained hotel room, complete with a small kitchen and laundry off to the side.

Steps leading up to the bath are similarly treated with mirrored supports and underlighting, so they too appear to float.

To hold drinks and magazines, Gacesa placed a platform on top of the plinth, made from two Corian disks with antique Tuscan glass sandwiched between them. The same materials were also used for the adjacent make-up counter and cupboards.

But the most impressive feature in the room is the design of the shower enclosure.

"I wanted to retain the uninterrupted views from the shower, but needed to provide privacy as well."

The solution was something that Gacesa says may never have been done before the glass panel between the shower and vanity is a massive one-way mirror, made more effective by the dark wall in the shower and the ceiling lights above the vanity.

"It's a trick you don't get sick of. I like to create illusions, so people look at something and do a double-take."

Credit list

Mark Gacesa, Ultraspace
Designed by Ultraspace; manufactured by Minka Joinery. Countertop – Corian Lava Rock
Shower glazed panel
Triple layered one-way mirror with sandblasted fret pattern interlayer
Bath and plinth
Bette Purista, Silverscape marble, Corian Lava Rock, antique Tuscan mirror
Hot water system
Rheem Optima 250L, electric
Commercial vinyl thatching supplied by Ultraspace
Duravit Darling New with SensoWash
Stewart Homes
Shower stall
Marble, Corian Lava Rock,Hosowari tile
Shower fittings and taps
Hansgrohe, custom coloured in brushed bronze and matte black
Parisi Twinset 525
Silverscape marble slabs; underfloor heating
Duravit Darling New with SensoWash
All custom coloured in brushed bronze and matte black

Story by: Paul Taylor

Photography by: Fred McKie

23 Jun, 2016

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