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Using glass in novel ways has transformed the look and functionality of this bathroom

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With its watery, translucent look, glass has long been a favorite material for bathrooms. But today it is being used in new and innovative ways. As well as adding a strong design element to a bathroom, it can also lighten a room and make it appear more spacious.

The bathroom featured on these pages highlights a variety of ways glass can be incorporated. The owner, who planned the room from an initial design concept by architect Brent Hulena, says she was influenced by the sleek, minimalist look of commercial design projects and the desire to lighten a formerly dark space.

"As this is a downstairs bathroom – for the teenagers in the family – it was important to introduce plenty of light," she says. "Using glass not only helps achieve this, it also reflects the color of the pool outside."

The new room replaces an old bathroom that was raised a step above the ground floor. This room was completely gutted and structural alterations made to accommodate the new room.

Back-painted glass lines the walls around the bath tub, below sill level. A thick slab of glass also forms the bath surround – its translucent quality adding to the watery feel. The vanity unit has a glass top and backsplash, similar to the walls.

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Glass also features on the other side of the room, where it forms a translucent wall and a door that separate the toilet and shower. As well as allowing light into these areas, it provides privacy.

To contrast the sheen of the glass, American walnut veneer was specified for the cabinetry – a material also featured in a new kitchen on the same floor. The cantilevered cabinetry helps create a spacious look – as does the large mirror. Concealed storage cabinets are built into the mirror on both sides. Plumbing is also concealed behind a false wall below the vanity cabinet.

First published date: 01 April 2005

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Credit List

Concept architect Brent Hulena, Hulena Co Architects
Designers Owner and Jen Pack
Vanity cabinetry Lindon Harris of Johannes Erren Cabinetmakers
Basins Philippe Starck, Duravit
Bath Bamberger
Faucets Vola
Hot water systems Rinnai
Lighting Halogen
Ventilation Manrose
Toilet Duravit