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Traditional bathrooms with marble

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Classic 1920s bathroom with marble, lever faucets, mosaics and dado rail

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Older apartments may have refined public spaces, but bathrooms tend to be rather more modest. Luckily there are several ways to give them a feeling of space.

These smaller bathrooms in a 1920s condominium are a case in point, says architect Alan Berman of Archetype.

"The original master bath only had a tub, basin and toilet but we were able to borrow space from the hall to create a more functional, user-friendly bathing space."

Berman reworked the now wider room to be more in line with a classic pre-WWII look, with a dash of modernity.

"Large-format marble tiles were introduced on the walls, and shower stall – this allowed us to avoid too much grouting. The tub surround, vanity top and floor are also in this richly veined stone. A pillow of mosaic tiles inlaid beside the tub breaks up the expanse of floor and adds a little luxury.


"We chose the two lever faucets on the vanity for their '20s feel," says Berman. "The dado rail also fits with the era."

The extra space allowed for the addition of a glass-fronted shower stall. This has a rainhead shower, four wall sprays and a fold-up seat.

"The other bathroom is self-contained, so we decided to give it a more modern look," says Berman.

The floor, some walls, and the vanity top are in the same Carrara marble as the master bathroom. However, here the wall behind the vanity and the shower stall are in a black, white and gray honed mosaic glass tile, offering warmth and character. The addition of the bold horizontal tilework gives the bathroom the illusion of greater space."

"We also gave the shower a built-in ceiling – this was a way to include task lights when the tower's concrete construction leaves no recess for wiring."

A clean-lined vanity top, tapware and floor sills were chosen for this room.

"The glass vessel basin is another modern inclusion, although freestanding basins do have an historical design precedent," says Berman. "I designed the vanity to be low, to compensate for the height of the bowl.

"A sculptural pendant light fitting adds to this bathroom's unexpected, bold aesthetic."

First published date: 13 July 2014

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Credit List

Architect Alan Berman AIA, Archetype (New York)
Interior designer John Kristovich, Duo Studio; Juliana Codas, Archetype Master bathroom
Vanity White lacquer exterior, maple interior, from Elephants Custom Furniture
Basin Slate Blue Reflections by JSG Oceana from AF Supply
Tub MTI Whirlpools from AF Supply
Faucets and shower fittings Hansgrohe Axor Carlton
Flooring White Carrara honed marble stack from Antico Stone & Tile
Wallcoverings Benjamin Moore Little Falls
Wall tiles Ciottoli Collection Nitay stick honed glass mosaics from Antico Stone & Tile
Toilet Duravit 1930 Series from AF Supply
Lighting Fulton by Hudson Valley Lighting
Accessories Hansgrohe, Cline Accessories
Faucets Samuel Heath Fairfield in polished chrome from AF Supply
Shower fittings Hansgrohe from AF Supply
Shower Hansgrohe Axor Carlton