Italian Renovation Reveal: The Bathroom

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Designing a small bathroom is always of challenge combining limited space and maximum function. Every measurement must be just right as there is no room for error. You might remember that this bathroom began as a tiny stall with only a toilet and a small window (no sink, and the shower was in the kitchen!).

We considered the idea of enlarging the window to expand the gorgeous view overlooking the green valley behind the building, but the difficulty of getting permits approved by the comune which highly prohibits most exterior changes to old buildings (of which most are in Italy) restricted both our schedule and budget. Hence, the window remains the original size, allowing a very special peak when taking a shower.

The one deal-breaking request that the client wanted was a bath tub. In most Italian bathroom updates these days, the choice is to remove the bath tub and replace it with a shower. Here, we have both options. The bath tub measures only 70x140cm, but is just adequate to soak in some bubbles. Any longer, and the bathroom would have taken away too much space from the adjoining kitchen. Still under debate is the addition of a glass shower door to replace the drape.

The tiles are “Pietra di Noto” by Marazzi, resembling the stone of Noto in Sicily, and the shelves are trimmed with local Carrara marble, cut by a local stone company. The dual function of the shelf is to conceal the plumbing. The walls are painted with the marmorino technique, paint mixed with an aggregate marble powder creating a matte surface. The sink is a small scale asymmetrical design called “Quinta” by Pozzi-Ginori. With no room for a bidet (most Italian bathrooms have one), a stylish sprayer was installed to help with resale value, and it also makes cleaning the basin very easy! The wall-mounted radiator doubles as a towel bar, heating the towels in the winter. The sconces, mirrors, and chandelier in the entry are antique pieces found in local shops. The washer and dryer are stacked neatly in the entry of the bathroom, all closed off by a frosted sliding glass door, allowing light to pass through.

 

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