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Take advantage of the view. "I must admit that the homeowners drove the decisions for these tubs," says James Crisp of Crisp Architects (see next photo also). "The real inspiration is the view. If a master bath has a separate shower and room for a freestanding tub strategically positioned to enjoy a great view, the big question is why not?" This tub is from Waterworks.
Highlight the positive. "Prior to its remodel, this master bathroom had a built-in vanity and tub surround that started at the entry door by the sinks and was carried all the way around to the shower," says Susan Brown of Susan E. Brown Interior Design. "By using a freestanding bathtub and separate vanities, I knew the space would be opened up yet still feel cohesive with the integration of similar colors and finishes."
She adds that "having negative space surrounding the tub gives more emphasis to it as the pièce de résistance of the room. I continued to emphasize that aspect with hidden accent lighting that shines through the onyx tub deck and down onto the iridescent turquoise glass tiles, creating an 'incredible soft glow,' as my client put it."
Be inspired by your travels. "The perfect way to incorporate my client’s love of his Hawaiian travels into his traditional Craftsman bungalow master bath was to create a spalike focal point with this freestanding nickel-lined copper tub," says Emily Gibson of Gibson Gimpel Interior Design. "Although the style is completely different from the Polynesian bungalows he enjoys on his vacations, the tub evokes the unique and relaxing atmosphere of the luxury hotel that he experiences every day in his Dallas home."
Take an artistic approach. "I think to really make a freestanding tub work, you need space, which is often not available in a standard bathroom, says Jim Zack of Zack/deVito Architecture + Construction. "These clients were very hands on and selected this tub themselves, but we were also thinking about the other materials in the bathroom. The sculptural quality of the stone and the craftsmanship of the stonework is amazing, and this tub has a very sculptural quality to it which is enhanced by placing it on a plinth."
Zack elaborates: "Many of the design decisions in other areas of the apartment were made to showcase the clients' collection of art and sculpture, and the master bathroom was no different, as you can see from the shelves we added to display part of their collection."
Create a wet room. This bathroom had a starring role on HGTV’s Bang for Your Buck. "The bathroom was completely reconfigured and shuffled around," says Emily Mackie of Inspired Interiors. "The room has 14-foot ceilings, and there’s a huge skylight overhead."
She explains that "the idea was really to place the soaking tub in an environment under the skylight, and have it share the area with the shower instead of dedicating space to each of them. It made more sense to allow the shower water to hit the tub and be part of an integrated area."
Glass mosaic tile "was used throughout the open air shower and the tub area," Mackie notes. "The MTI whirlpool tub has jetted features and remote controls, while the shower has a Grohe fixture with an adjustable arm. There's also a heated towel bar."
Treat the tub like furniture. "The owner just fell in love with this tub and had to have it," says Colleen Knowles of knowles ps. "It worked perfectly in this older home, where we transformed an extra bedroom into a fabulous master bathroom. The vanities and tub look like furniture items set around the room in an interesting way, and the layout leaves the large, original windows unobstructed."
Add curves to a rectangle. "For this bathroom we wanted a way to maintain as much floor space as possible and create an 'unfitted' look at the same time," says Lance Stratton of Stratton Studio. The tub we selected has a small footprint but still looks substantial. Its slipper shape provides some relief to what is an otherwise rectilinear room."