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biophilic design room-by-room: the bathroom

in biophilic room-by-room

The bathroom is a room that’s usually considered mainly for its functionality. Yet it can be a deeply restorative space, becoming a domestic self-care sanctuary.

This episode of Biophilic Room-by-Room looks into the essence and the design of bathrooms from a biophilic perspective

a domestic sanctuary

Together with the bedroom, the bathroom is a space for the self, a personal refuge. In the bathroom, physical self-care extends into mental self-care by means of wellness-centered rituals that regenerate body and mind.

Bathroom time marks the transition between day and night. A restorative design supports these crucial moments through space, setting the premise for positive days and restful nights.

Biophilic bathroom with neutral tones, natural materials and abundant light.
Credit: Nainoa

designing a biophilic bathroom

Sensory design elements such as rich textures, sounds, and scents elevate the functional experience of the bathroom, making it deeply comforting and pleasurable. In between day and night, bathrooms need to embody different atmospheres according to the time of day; a harmonization of opposites that’s well supported by changing lighting patterns.

Water is a distinctive element of the bathroom’s experience. From a design perspective, faucets, showers, and bathtubs are all occasions to introduce water features that envelop the senses in the uniquely restorative feel of water. From a broader perspective, thoughtful design choices can invite a more profound appreciation of the value of clean running water, by creatively connecting domestic water usage with the natural water cycle.

Bathroom with brown marble accents and a view to the outdoors.
Credit: Antonio Lupi
Close-up of textured bathroom tiles.
Credit: Alex & Corban
Stone basin with matching fluted wall.
Credit: Il Granito

As a whole, bathrooms are important rooms for personal wellbeing as well as occasions to appreciate resources that – before becoming buildings’ amenities – are precious natural elements to value and care for. A perspective that widens the role of design, including the responsibility to cultivate a more conscious awareness of our place in this world.


Biophilic design resources by anooi:
A Biophilic YearApplying Biophilic DesignVisual Library of Biophilic Design