Sensory spa bathroom bliss

PUBLISHED: 09:28 30 July 2014 | UPDATED: 09:30 30 July 2014

The Toto Neorest bathtub is designed to create a sensational experience of relaxation

The Toto Neorest bathtub is designed to create a sensational experience of relaxation


It’s time to think carefully about creating your own sensory experience in the bathroom, says DAVID ASPINALL, Design Director at Sapphire Living Space

Correct planning is essential to get the right spa bathroom for youCorrect planning is essential to get the right spa bathroom for you

More and more I work with clients who are looking to create a tranquil spa environment at home and, with manufacturers increasingly focused on offering sensory products, achieving this might be easier than you think.

Where people go wrong is to not do it properly. Putting a sauna in the corner is no longer enough and it takes more than a few white tiles to achieve a clean, minimal room that is inviting and calming.

Creating a home spa needs careful thought and planning if you are to achieve a space that can be both invigorating and relaxing whilst still perform as an everyday bathroom. When done properly, however, this luxurious space can add value to your home. The bathroom is such an important and personal space that many potential purchasers head straight for it when viewing a house.

So why are so many of us choosing to invest in our bathrooms and create our own home spa? Imagine the joy of having a steam at home and not having to worry about how you look in front of others or coming home from a hard day and lying down in your own relaxing horizontal spa shower. Not a morning person? How about waking up with a multi sensory shower?

A perfect combination of design and lookA perfect combination of design and look

Increasingly clients are opting to wind down at home and who can blame them? Why not let your own hydrotherapy bath stimulate the blood circulation in your body before heading up to bed for the deepest, most relaxing sleep possible. To me that is much more appealing than finishing a session in the local health spa, getting dressed in a communal changing room then having to ‘wake up’ for the drive back home.

Is this some hippy-dippy notion or a passing fad, I hear you ask? I think not. It wasn’t so long ago that a ‘luxury’ kitchen was a space crammed with as many wall units as possible and integrated appliances were for the select few. Move forward a few years and wine coolers, built-in coffee machines and boiling water taps have become more common place with an integrated bin as standard!

So now we have our kitchens sussed it makes perfect sense to move on to the bathroom and let technology and design merge to form a sense of relaxation like no other. In fact, the move towards more ‘boutique-chic’ designs began a couple of years ago when wetrooms started to gain popularity.

The desire for a shower or bathing experience means today’s products not only have to look the part but need to offer something extra.

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Now baths can be filled in advance from an app on your phone and will even remember your favourite temperature and depth.

The Toto Neorest bathtub is available in sizes for one or two people and is designed to create a sensational experience of relaxation with features such as underwater lighting which diffuses through the water to encourage a range of pleasant moods depending on the colour. The Hydrohands technology warms and massages the lower back with its soft spiralling flow, while air bubbles rise gently upwards through the bath.

And for those of us who rarely have time to take a long soak? The HI-SPA 600 shower by Aquademy may have the answer. The combination of aromatherapy, 16-colour chromotherapy lighting and 4 different water-patterns offer an all-encompassing wellbeing experience. Pick a colour that fits your mood and choose from either the invigorating waterfall massage action or maybe you would prefer the tropical rain or relaxing nebuliser effect to stimulate your senses.

With so many well designed products available there has never been a better time to redesign your bath and shower rooms.

Sapphire Living Space, 3 Dart Business Park, Topsham, EX3 0QH. 01392 879320.

Dos and Don’ts of Bathroom Planning

Don’t forget about lighting – including softly lit recessed areas will add mood and atmosphere.

Don’t be afraid to reconfigure your room. Just because your basin has always been against a certain wall doesn’t mean it can’t be moved!

Don’t forget about ventilation - Bathrooms create water vapour and moisture in the air can lead to condensation and mould growth.

Do experiment with a room colour other than white. White always works well but natural stone, earth tones and metallic finishes can add texture and warmth to your space.

Do include seating in your shower. There are many options to choose from but a standalone teak bench always looks good, as does a built in seat finished in the same stone or tile of your shower area.

Do consult a professional – like kitchens, bathrooms can be a big investment so seek the help of an experienced designer to make it the room of your dreams. They will know what products are available and a good designer will think outside the box while considering the boring bits like discrete odour extraction, heating and waterproofing.

Know Your Therapies

Hydrotherapy, or water therapy, is the use of water to relieve discomfort and promote physical wellbeing. The temperature of water used affects the therapeutic properties of the treatment. Hot water is chosen for its relaxing properties and is also thought to stimulate the immune system. Tepid water can be used for stress reduction and can be especially relaxing in hot weather.

Chromatherapy, or colour therapy, is very popular in the home spa environment and is based on the body’s seven chakras. When these “energy centres” become unaligned, colour and light are used to restore the balance.

• VIOLET - relaxes muscles and calms the nervous system.

• INDIGO - Promotes intuition.

• BLUE - Offers tranquillity and is used to relieves headaches, migraines, stomach pains and muscle cramps.

• GREEN - Promotes relaxation and detoxification.

• YELLOW - Assists the metabolism and is believed to strengthen the nervous system and combat glandular disease.

• ORANGE - Helps depression, discontent and pessimism.

• RED – Gives courage and can increase blood pressure and circulation.

Aromatherapy is the therapeutic use of plant-derived, essential oils to promote physical and psychological well-being. Plant aromatics have been recognised for their healing qualities by a wide range of civilisations throughout the ages.

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