9 Beautiful Bathrooms
Hail to the throne
More than a place to splash, the modern bathroom is a preparation station, ablution outpost and decompression chamber. These nine rooms do all that, with an emphasis on beauty and ahhhh.
IN A WORD: WOW
The bathroom in Andrea Schumacher’s Denver showroom is a big hit at every party she hosts. “We use it as a showcase of our work,” she says, “and we occasionally house guests overnight.” With that in mind, the bath is more than simply an office-space loo. “It was originally just a powder bathroom, but we gutted it and expanded the size to 8 by 15,” she says. “We added everything you see, as well as a shower with a teak bench.”
The space works hard—and looks good doing it. A cantilevered sink conforms to ADA standards, while upping the design ante with Kohler’s Purist wall-mount faucet in Vibrant Moderne Brushed Gold. Other plumbing fixtures, a towel bar and swing-arm sconces share the brilliant-metallic finish. An ornate mirror—a 1stdibs find—hangs on a wall of small, white marble tiles laid in a herringbone pattern “to ensure that the antique mirror pops,” Schumacher says. The Crossville tiles, framed with a Schluter edge, also protect the wallpaper from getting wet.
Paul Montgomery Studio produced the custom-designed scenic wallpaper. Phillip Jeffries paper, from Town Studio, covers the ceiling, using light and shadow to give the surface the illusion of depth and shape. “We wanted to make the bath feel luxurious,” Schumacher says. Adding a full-length drapery hung from golden hardware is a fitting finishing touch. “The Greek key trim gives it a bit more oomph!”
PRO TIP “Use the HIGH/LOW METHOD, meaning pick high-end products for half the items in the room and low-end for the other half. In this instance, we saved on the tile and splurged on the wallpaper, mirror and hardware.” — Interior Designer Andrea Monath Schumacher
DESIGNER: Andrea Monath Schumacher Andrea Schumacher Interiors
THE BIG COZY
A 300-square-foot master bath in Denver’s Washington Park channels the romantic feel of New Orleans with both its architecture and décor. The windows wrapping the space, designed by architect Carlos Alvarez and interior designer Carolyn Morris, look as if they are covered by shutters. But the slats actually wrap the exterior of the home, while still providing the striking striped pattern of shadow and light.
Inside, the bath is outfitted with white fixtures—a vintage-style claw-foot tub by Waterworks; Carrara 3-inch hexagonal floor tile; and a custom vanity by Aspen Leaf Kitchens, with a Carrara marble countertop. “The vanity’s curves suit the space well,” Morris says. “The house is a real mix of old and new and reclaimed materials. This piece has the right antique feel.” Behind the vanity is Malabar wallpaper by Cole & Son, a striking, large-scale paisley print that embodies the glamorous 1950s, the era it was originally created.
Modern elements mix with brass and bronze lighting from Visual Comfort, and ribbed-glass and steel doors offer privacy to the shower and water closet. To soften all the hard surfaces, Morris added floor-to-ceiling draperies, created by Tatterdemalion Inc. from a Michael S. Smith Inc. cotton-linen fabric. “Drapery is unexpected in a bathroom. The fabric adds lots of softness, and the space is just as beautiful with the drapes closed,” Morris says. Underfoot, a vintage Persian rug provides color, patina and warmth. “When you walk in,” Morris says, “you see a gorgeous room—not necessarily a bathroom.”
PRO TIP “Consider ADDING DRAPES in a bathroom; fabric softens the cold materials. I also like to have a rug that’s more permanent— a super-durable antique wool rug instead of a bathmat or cotton rug.” — Designer Carolyn Morris
THIS BATHROOM WENT TO CHOATE
“This bath is a great visual surprise when you open the door,” says designer Molly Bevan of the powder room in a traditional, two-story brick home in Denver’s Lowry neighborhood. At just 25 square feet, “it packs a punch,” designer Kim Blankenburg says. The color scheme taps into a classically preppy palette: navy blue, rich green, crisp white and brilliant brass. “Blue tones and warm brass accents are consistent threads throughout the home,” Bevan says. Those elements, as well as the homeowners’ wish for bold and colorful, “allowed us to get playful,” Blankenburg explains.
A graphic palm-leaf-motif wallpaper, Schumacher’s Abstract Leaf in Navy, wraps the room in a chic pattern. The paint on the existing vanity is Benjamin Moore Weeping Willow, a classic green with some depth. Lucite cabinet hardware brings a little touch of Palm Springs glam. Perla White quartz by MSI delivers a crisp, clean countertop. A round Rejuvenation mirror has a brass frame to echo the sink faucet, towel bar and Amélie Cord Pendant lights from Cedar & Moss.
What was a totally ’90s bath—oak vanity, 12 x 12 beige tiles, Hollywood makeup-mirror globe lights—is now “playful, modern and chic,” Bevan says, for a family of four with two teenage girls. “This powder room is unique to our clients,” Blankenburg says. “Who else in the neighborhood has a bright-green vanity?”
PRO TIP “FRESH FLOWERS in a bathroom are a lovely accessory, especially in the powder room when you are hosting guests.” — Interior Designers Kim Blankenburg and Molly Bevan
This tiny powder room in a house near Golden had no room for expansion. “It is just 5 feet by 6.5 feet,” says interior designer Pamela Chelle. “Every inch of this room had to count.” The redesign began with a wow wall of tile—a patterned matte concrete tile by Kelly Wearstler for Ann Sacks, “to create a powerful backdrop for glossy-white finishes,” she says.
Rather than downsize fixtures in the small room, Chelle upsized the bath’s vanity and mirror, both sporting glossy whites. She swapped a pedestal sink for a wider, floating vanity by Villeroy & Boch, “to create the illusion of more floor space,” she explains. A custom mirror by Kravet that spans the wall “creates the feeling of a more spacious bathroom,” she says. Above the modernist vanity with a Kohler Purist faucet, a simple globe pendant from Cedar & Moss echoes the home’s Midcentury bones.
The goal, Chelle says, was to make a big impact in a small space. “The homeowners have an amazing art collection throughout their home, and this small room needed to hold its own,” Chelle says. “We used high contrast in color to create a powerful reaction.”
PRO TIP “Never underestimate the impact of an OVERSCALE MIRROR for light reflection and providing the illusion of more space.” — Interior Designer Pamela Chelle
THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS
Claudia and Steve Shannon raised two daughters in their 3,000-square-foot Arvada home built in 1992. Now empty nesters, they decided a remodel was in order. Enter Jeremy Parcels, AKBD, of Christopher’s Kitchen & Bath. Parcels completely changed the layout of the master bath—moving the shower, both vanities and the tub—and updated the cultured marble walls, ceramic tile floor and builder-grade fixtures with walnut and Carrara-inspired porcelain in a herringbone pattern underfoot and an over-scale subway installation on the walls. “Porcelain is going to hold up better than natural stone,” Parcels advises.
A mix of metals—brushed-nickel sink and shower fixtures from Sigma, brushed-gold lighting from Rejuvenation, and a satin-gold drawer pulls from Top Knobs Decor—warms up the cool tile. A custom walnut vanity from Hallmark Cabinet and a custom grid-glass shower surround built by the Christopher’s team accessorize the space. With heated floors and a zero-threshold shower (with no curb to step or roll over), this bathroom is as practical as it is beautiful.
PRO TIP “HIRE A PROFESSIONAL. Most people remodel their master bathroom only once in their entire life. Hire a professional, tell them your wants and desires, and let them execute it.” — Designer Jeremy Parcels, AKBD
ZEN AND NOW
“Everything was chosen as a background to the homeowners’ exceptional collection of Asian art,” says designer Kimille Taylor of Kimille Taylor Interior Design and Decoration. And that background, Taylor says, had to be quiet. Using Japanese gravel gardens and the owners’ watercolor scrolls as inspiration, Taylor selected a tight, earthy color palette and a blend of materials for this Telluride ground-up build. Honed silver travertine floor tiles, combed Jerusalem limestone wall tiles and teak wood that wraps the Japanese soaking tub blend blissfully in the bath. “The materials create this textural envelope to give the room a feeling of not being so new, even though we just sheet-rocked the whole place,” Taylor explains.
The layered colors and textures contribute to a harmonious environment of quiet, understated luxury. The wet area gives a spa-like feel and allows the homeowners to shower before climbing the stairs and sinking into the deep tub. Throughout the project, Taylor prioritized “letting the space just have some space,” she says.
PRO TIP “Incorporate different WARM-LIGHT SOURCES that are dimmable.” — Designer Kimille Taylor
With retirement on the horizon, these homeowners wanted to prepare for enjoying their next chapter in the east Longmont ranch-style home they built in 1989. With the help of Proud House Studio & Co., they removed a deck tub in their dated master suite; replaced it with a large shower, including a bench, hand shower, rain shower and a zero-entry clearance; and added storage with an armoire-style cabinet. “This spa-like bathroom has some interesting plays, with materials that are a little unconventional,” designer Megan Daughtry says. “We installed two differently stained maple-wood cabinets—a toffee-colored vanity and an espresso-stained armoire cabinet—both from Siteline Cabinetry. We custom-matched the interior wood door stain to complement the other two wood stains, creating a dynamic yet coordinated palette.”
Fixtures, Daughtry explains, also wear a variety of finishes: Wallmounted faucets and shower fixtures are Delta Cassidy in warm Polished Nickel; light fixtures are Pottery Barn Straight-Arm Sconces in Nickel; and mirrors are pivoting Yaquina Rounded Rectangles from Rejuvenation in an Oil-Rubbed Bronze finish.
Overall, the mix—tempered by Caesarstone counters in polished Organic White and watery-blue walls—echoes the farmhouse style of the newly remodeled home. “The inlay-tile rug [Highland Blossom Marble mosaic from The Tile Shop] in the new warm floors is a beautiful addition,” Daughtry says.
PRO TIP “Put NICHES in every shower and ledges next to every tub to organize the bath products, candles, etc.” — Designer Megan Daughtry
DESIGNER: Megan Daughtry and Lisa Gambiana Proud House Studio & Co.
The owner of this downtown Denver townhome has a love for texture, raw materials and contemporary art. Designer Katie Schroder of Atelier Interior Design and contractor Tim Saul of Saul Construction were enlisted to remodel the home with this in mind. “To maximize the budget for the rest of the home, we kept the guest bathroom floor plan and updated all the finishes to give it a new feel,” Saul says. Schroder added a new vanity and glass shower surround.
Texture and shape stem from Shinju Crest hexagonal tile from Decorative Materials on the vanity backsplash, brass and chain-mail pendant lights from Arteriors, and Shagreen Grey High Honed Porcelain 24-inch-square tile from Decorative Materials on the shower walls. Winged sculptures, although white, stand out from the white wall. “The walls and tile with the neutral color scheme make the room feel very tranquil, while still having an edgy vibe,” Schroder says.
PRO TIP “Early on, TAPE OUT THE EXACT DIMENSIONS of every part of the bathroom. You will never be as happy in the end if you don’t take time to stand in a square of tape in a completely demoed bathroom and practice washing your hair!” — Builder Tim Saul
A traditional, Spanish-style home in Denver’s Cherry Creek neighborhood is a custom build for a couple with young children. “It has some modern touches here and there,” designer Carolyn Morris says. The master bath, however, mostly hearkens back to old world European style. The herringbone floors are 200-year-old reclaimed-oak planks from The WoodGuys in Denver. “We didn’t want any shine—as raw of a look as possible,” Morris says.
The walls and ledge behind the tub are cement-based plaster, giving the space a depth not afforded by drywall. The underside of the Waterworks claw-foot tub was painted black, and Morris paired the fixture with a petrified-wood stump as a side table. “The homeowners wanted materials with history,” she says. “Everything has a patina.”
The shower and water closet, she explains, are tucked away “so you have a peaceful room when you walk in, without all the nitty-gritty of the bathroom.” Over the tub, a striking piece of modern art painted by architect Carlos Alvarez stands in distinct contrast to the historical feel of the space. “We like the contrast of abstract art with older materials and traditional colors,” Morris says. “A few modern touches and pieces throughout the house keep it from getting too traditional.”
PRO TIP “Turn a vintage or ANTIQUE DRESSER INTO A VANITY. It’s one of my favorite things to do for a bathroom. It adds instant interest and a patina you don’t get with new cabinetry.” — Designer Carolyn Morris