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biophilic design room-by-room: the bathroom

in biophilic room-by-room

The bathroom is a functional room that’s present in every home. But it can be a lot more than that, becoming nothing short of a domestic self-care sanctuary. And even aim at broader objectives…

Let’s explore how to give bathrooms a deeper value through design, biophilic design.

Biophilic bathroom design with sandy tones and rich textures.
Credit: Ato

a space for the self

Together with the bedroom, the bathroom is a space dedicated to the self, a personal refuge. Bathroom time is also what marks two crucial points in the day: the transition from night to daytime and vice-versa. Separating activity and rest is important from both a mental and physical perspective, and bathroom design can help make the most of these moments, leading to fruitful days and restful nights.

Biophilic bathroom with neutral tones and materials and plenty of light.
Credit: Nainoa

harmonizing opposites

Marking the transition between day and night means that a bathroom’s atmosphere needs to be energizing or relaxing according to the occasion. One sure way to achieve that is lighting. Shifting from bright to subtle, light will transform how the space feels, moving mind and body between energy and relaxation.

Bathroom with stone bathtub looking out of a big window and rich stone wall.
Credit: Nazar Tsymbaliuk

sensory design

Just like sensory features are key to self-care, sensory design elements find an ideal application in the bathroom. This being a function-oriented room, bathroom design will introduce sensory elements mostly as part of the space’s functions. Surfaces will then become rich textures to touch, sounds and scents will enrich the experience, and windows will offer living entertainment and a view to the outdoors.

Close-up of textured bathroom tiles.
Credit: Alex & Corban
Granite bathroom wall and vanity.
Credit: Il Granito

leveraging the presence of water

Water is an obvious element of any bathroom, so why not work on it? From a design perspective, faucets, showers, and bathtubs are all occasions to introduce water features that engage the senses through the unique sound and feel of water. Looking at things from a broader perspective, running water is sometimes taken for granted in our modern homes, and design can restore deeper awareness of this important resource. This goes from using water efficiently to reusing it whenever possible. But it also means recalling where it comes from. Clear water is clearly not born inside pipes, so how can we connect domestic water usage with the natural water cycle?

Free standing sink with waterfall faucet.
Credit: Antonio Lupi

All in all, the bathroom is an important room for personal wellbeing, but it can also become the occasion to appreciate things that – before becoming amenities in buildings – are precious natural resources to value and care for. This is what biophilic bathroom design does, it elevates daily needs to pleasures while cultivating the awareness of our place in this world. All through design.

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