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Fresh white bathroom with chromatherapy

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This new bathroom in a loft-style apartment in an historic building transforms the look of the room – in more ways than one

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A remodeling project is a great way to inject new life into a bathroom, but it isn't just new fixtures and surfaces that are transforming this bathroom in a loft-style apartment.

Owners Judy Mortrude and Steve Mahon also wanted to introduce chromatherapy to the shower, so they can choose a lighting color that best suits their mood.

Architect John Idstrom of Partners 4 Design says the original bathroom had been built by the developer when the apartments were first introduced to the historic building.

"It was a rather ordinary room. The owners wanted a bathroom that would better suit their needs and the aesthetics of their home interior, which is modern. They have several items of furniture that are design classics."

Idstrom says the starting point for the design was the flooring featuring traditional black, gray and white tiles.


"These were the first things to be chosen – nothing else was locked in, although we needed to put the plumbing in much the same place."

Creating a more spacious look was also important. To this end, two cantilevered Robern vanity units were specified, rather than a floor-based cabinet. These feature white Corian tops with recessed detailing that complements the white and gray floor tiles.

The vanities are teamed with matching Robern pendant lights that are suspended in front of two large mirrored medicine cabinets. The fronts of these cabinets slide up to reveal the storage behind.

"We replaced the built-in bath with a freestanding tub that opens up the room visually," says Idstrom. "We placed this at right angles to the vanities, rather than in-line like the original bath."

The new shower features colored LED lighting set within a recessed panel. The lighting color can be changed to create different mood settings.

The sandblasted glass door to the windowless bathroom allows light to flow in both directions, with the colored LED lighting bringing a touch of drama to the bedroom.

Both the shower and the toilet area tucked around the corner have a different tile floor. Here larger marble tiles define the separate spaces.

First published date: 13 July 2014

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Credit List

Architect John BA Idstrom II AIA, CID, David Ostreim AIA, Nicole Sirek, Allied ASID, Partners 4 Design (Minneapolis, MN)
Vanity cabinets, light pendants and accessories Robern
Tub, sinks, shower fittings and faucets Kohler
Vanity countertops Corian
Flooring Basketweave mosaic in Bianco Carrara with Nero from Fantasia Showrooms
Wall tiles Plume ceramic from Fantasia Showrooms