9 dreamy bathrooms to inspire a tranquil retreat

The best of modern-romantic bathroom inspiration, and how to create a chic tranquil retreat.

In the detail

A large square walk in shower with kit kat white tiles all around it

This hotel-style bathroom is an en suite in an art-filled family home owned by a jewellery designer with a fearless approach to colour and proportion – a style that is expressed in her interiors as well as her work. Here, the use of petite white floor and wall tiles with black grouting gives the bathroom a graphic sensibility that is softened by an elegant wooden vanity unit, lightweight cotton towels, and a trailing philodendron.

Green washing

A green bathroom with forest green painted walls and dark tiles and a white freestanding bath

Making use of a restrained palette of materials and deep, nature-inspired colours – think milky white, dark olive and charcoal – this bathroom in a barn-style family holiday home is a smart study in old-fashioned elegance. Our favourite touch here is the wooden board- and-batten panelling used to line one wall, which creates a warm backdrop and is painted in a delightfully rich shade of green.

Vein glorious

A white and black veined bathroom bench with a white sink and a round mirror on the wall

For a young couple with small children, renovating a 100-year-old cottage on a steep slope included sensitively updating the bathrooms without simply imposing an overly contemporary aesthetic on them. Key to giving this small bathroom a pared-back yet period feel, for example, was the use of a thick slab of marble as an eye-catching vanity counter.

All white now

An all white bathroom with white subway tiles on the wall, marble white square tiles on the floor and a white metal bathtub in the middle of the room

Situated in a cottage on a working winery, this light-filled bathroom combines its status as a relaxation zone with elegant, modern lines. The all-white floor and wall tiles enhance the back-to- basics feel, while the eye-catching centrepiece – a retro-fabulous iron bathtub complete with wooden backrest – is a contemporary take on the iron tubs that were hauled into kitchens and filled with hot water for once-a-week bathing, back in the day.

Top tip

A free-standing tub adds instant romantic appeal, but the practical details are vital too – a camouflaged ledge along a nearby wall is essential for bath-time accessories.

Vintage vibes

A bathroom with a black and glass shower screen, a white freestanding vanity sink, and navy and yellow patterned tiles

Wood works

Bathroom with a shower to the left with a brass head and hose and glass shower screen. A timber vanity sits next to the shower with a single white sink

In a newly built dream home filled with handmade pieces of contemporary design, the bathrooms were created to have a fresh and simple appeal, rather than reflecting up-to-the-minute trends. The results include this relaxed bathing space in the guest suite, which exudes comfort and warmth courtesy of its natural wooden vanity unit and brushed-brass tapware.

Lighten up

A bathroom with timber floors and a crittle style window. A freestanding bath with a freestanding plant pot next to it

A suitably tranquil nook, this en suite bathroom is centred on a large picture window designed to take in the views of a spacious, private garden, while allowing natural light to flood the interior. Houseplants of varying textures and sizes echo the outlook. The property is a lifestyle block with stables and paddocks, and this part of the garden has mostly been left to its own devices, with the idea that its layers will develop over time. Where better to stop and take some time to admire the greenery than from the elegant oval tub?

Get the blues

A large walk-in shower that is tiled with white, textured tiles, a deep navy vanity is on the right with white stone benchtop

This family bathroom combines practicality with vintage appeal, via a generous custom-made vanity unit painted in a deep and restful shade of blue. Topping an old cabinet or sideboard such as this one with a slab of marble, and installing a pair of oval basins on top with brushed-brass tapware, is a budget-friendly recipe for giving any bathroom space old-school charm while also making it resolutely user-friendly.

Top tip

The ultra-simple shower cubicle, demarcated via a single pane of glass and a shift to tiled flooring, adds to the easy-going appeal of this bathroom. A sleek recessed shelf inset into the shower area holds all the necessary accoutrements.

Hooked on classic

A bathroom with white subway tiles on the wall, a rectangular window above the tile line, a free standing bath in the middle, and grey subway tiles in a herringbone pattern on the floor

Sleek and geometrical, this bathroom combines black and white to ultra-chic effect, as seen in the wall of subway tiles with black grouting, the sculptural free-standing tub and the black window frames. Underfoot, cross-hatched slate tiles add tactile appeal and are warmed by underfloor heating. Another monochrome element, the floating vanity counter provides plenty of storage and is topped with an oversized yet elegant contemporary basin.

IMAGES VIA GREG COX, WARREN HEATH & ELSA YOUNG


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