From perfunctory practicalities to healing hubs: turning post Covid-19 washrooms into sensory spaces can be truly beneficial to occupants
Bathrooms used to be viewed as functional places; harsh and sterile with cold surfaces and poor acoustics.
Now architects are realising that good washroom design has the potential to unlock better lives.
A YouGov poll commissioned by bathroom manufacturer Geberit in 2021 found that one lasting legacy of the past 18 months was an increased awareness of the importance of wellbeing.
It polled 2,000 adults across the UK and found that more than half had made improvements to their self-care routine since the pandemic began.
Other findings suggested a shift towards more private spaces within the home, with half of respondents entertaining at home less than before the pandemic.
Geberit has put together a list of 5 ways architects and designers can harness sensory design to transform the bathroom - that most private space of all - into a modern day sanctuary:
- Manage the acoustics within a bathroom to ensure noise is contained within the space, both inside the room and behind the wall. Geberit’s Silent-db20 piping can reduce noise transfer from draining water from washbasins or showers.
- Wall-hung toilets with concealed cisterns and pre-wall frames, such as Geberit Duofix, decouple from the construction preventing noise from travelling down the wall and through the floor.
- Pay attention to colour. It can have a profound influence on how homeowners think about their washroom space.
- Use brassware as a reference point when matching colours and choose bathroom accessories that complement brassware finishes. Geberit has a wide range of flush plate colours and finishes that work well with ceramic furniture options.
- Opt for natural materials, such as wood, slate and stone, over high-gloss to bring warmth and comfort to the washroom.
- Be aware that exposure to harsh light sources, especially at night, can disturb natural sleep patterns. Fit orientation lighting or automatic lights to preserve the sanctuary of sleep.
- Homeowners now embrace hygienically optimised innovations so install touchless flush controls for improved health and hygiene.
- Awaken the kinesthetic sense by incorporating textures with materials such as rustic wood or slate for surfaces and flush plates.
- Ensure there is good ventilation.
- Look into the latest odour-extraction technologies. Geberit has a unit that can be installed in the concealed cisterns of its Sigma range that filters the air to neutralise unwanted odours.
5. A place of escape
- Make the design as much about feeling and atmosphere as the functional practicalities.
- Homeowners are more aware of wellbeing so reimagine the bathroom as the ultimate place of escape in the home.
For more information and technical support, visit geberit.co.uk/sensorydesign