9 Modern Bathroom Ideas That Go Off the Beaten Path

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By Samantha Daly
These whimsical washrooms will inspire you to kick your modern bathroom renovation up a notch.

If your bathroom design is feeling lackluster, look no further for innovative design inspiration. From a converted enclosed deck to a shower that's steps away from a private garden, these unique spaces are sure to ignite your creativity.

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Built by Berkeley–based architect Jorgen Elmer in 1964 for renowned artist Tom Holland as a studio and home for his family, the 2,395-square-foot residence in Berkeley Hills, California, has been listed for $1,250,000 through Red Oak Realty. The updated home includes a bright and spacious remodeled master bathroom designed by Mary Cronin of The Design Shop. The new bathroom occupies what used to be an outdoor deck just off the master bedroom on the second floor. Now encased with boxed oak beams fitted with glass walls, and a glass ceiling, the bathroom is dreamy space that offers 180-degree views of the breathtaking bay. 

Built by Berkeley–based architect Jorgen Elmer in 1964 for renowned artist Tom Holland as a studio and home for his family, the 2,395-square-foot residence in Berkeley Hills, California, has been listed for $1,250,000 through Red Oak Realty. The updated home includes a bright and spacious remodeled master bathroom designed by Mary Cronin of The Design Shop. The new bathroom occupies what used to be an outdoor deck just off the master bedroom on the second floor. Now encased with boxed oak beams fitted with glass walls, and a glass ceiling, the bathroom is dreamy space that offers 180-degree views of the breathtaking bay. 

Perforated black panels are a recurring theme throughout this renovated home from architecture firm Carter Williamson. Despite the dark color palette, the home is still able to find plenty of light. The bathroom echoes the monochromatic style of the rest of the house, and features an asymmetric pitched roof. 

Perforated black panels are a recurring theme throughout this renovated home from architecture firm Carter Williamson. Despite the dark color palette, the home is still able to find plenty of light. The bathroom echoes the monochromatic style of the rest of the house, and features an asymmetric pitched roof. 

The husband-and-wife duo behind London–based architecture and design/build practice Chan + Eayrs, Zoe Chan Eayrs and Merlin Eayrs, only work on one project at a time. The evocative details found throughout the renovation of The Weavers House are a testament to their focused approach. Wood and veined Arabescato marble, used throughout the home, create contrasting warm and cool elements. The couple’s preference for raw, natural materials, tactile surfaces, and verdant color can be seen throughout the house. 

The husband-and-wife duo behind London–based architecture and design/build practice Chan + Eayrs, Zoe Chan Eayrs and Merlin Eayrs, only work on one project at a time. The evocative details found throughout the renovation of The Weavers House are a testament to their focused approach. Wood and veined Arabescato marble, used throughout the home, create contrasting warm and cool elements. The couple’s preference for raw, natural materials, tactile surfaces, and verdant color can be seen throughout the house. 

Robert Highsmith and his wife, Stefanie Brechbuehler—co-founders of the design studio Workstead—split their time between Brooklyn, New York, and Charleston, South Carolina. Last year, after repurposing the Mendel Rivers Federal Building in Charleston as the Dewberry Hotel, they began exploring a style they’ve since identified as "Southern modernism." Recently, their research and experimentation have culminated thanks to a meticulously restored 1853 Italianate Victorian row house, which they’ve named Workstead House. Styled with a carefully curated selection of furniture and accessories that evoke the moody spirit of South Carolina’s Lowcountry—yet still infuse a good dose of modernity—Workstead House sets a new standard for historic home remodels.  

Robert Highsmith and his wife, Stefanie Brechbuehler—co-founders of the design studio Workstead—split their time between Brooklyn, New York, and Charleston, South Carolina. Last year, after repurposing the Mendel Rivers Federal Building in Charleston as the Dewberry Hotel, they began exploring a style they’ve since identified as "Southern modernism." Recently, their research and experimentation have culminated thanks to a meticulously restored 1853 Italianate Victorian row house, which they’ve named Workstead House. Styled with a carefully curated selection of furniture and accessories that evoke the moody spirit of South Carolina’s Lowcountry—yet still infuse a good dose of modernity—Workstead House sets a new standard for historic home remodels.  

Drawing inspiration from the homeowners’ love for meditation and taking cues from Japanese gardens and Buddhist retreats in Kyoto, tranquil gardens were created off the master suite, dining area, and bathroom. Paying homage to Japanese "onsens" (bathing hot springs), in the bathroom a sunken brick basin was designed with a removable wood top to create a shower platform. The wash room opens to a private garden that is nestled between the original cottage and the master suite addition. And, hidden in the bathroom’s cabinetry, a secret passage leads to the kitchen. A private garden is accessible by a glass panel. 

Drawing inspiration from the homeowners’ love for meditation and taking cues from Japanese gardens and Buddhist retreats in Kyoto, tranquil gardens were created off the master suite, dining area, and bathroom. Paying homage to Japanese "onsens" (bathing hot springs), in the bathroom a sunken brick basin was designed with a removable wood top to create a shower platform. The wash room opens to a private garden that is nestled between the original cottage and the master suite addition. And, hidden in the bathroom’s cabinetry, a secret passage leads to the kitchen. A private garden is accessible by a glass panel. 

When a Taiwanese expat couple with a two-year old child returned home to Taiwan, they decided to settle down in the district of Xindian in Taiwan’s New Taipei City, where the husband had spend most of his childhood. The couple purchased a 1,352-square-foot apartment near the river and reached out to Taipei–based interior design firm KC Design Studio to help them turn it into a stylish, modern home where industrial elements like steel, brick, and exposed concrete harmonize with vintage accents. The ever-shifting material palette continues in the two bathrooms, which have walls and ceilings with different types of tiles. For the private areas, lighter colors, warm wood, and more classical details cater to the wife's preferences. 

When a Taiwanese expat couple with a two-year old child returned home to Taiwan, they decided to settle down in the district of Xindian in Taiwan’s New Taipei City, where the husband had spend most of his childhood. The couple purchased a 1,352-square-foot apartment near the river and reached out to Taipei–based interior design firm KC Design Studio to help them turn it into a stylish, modern home where industrial elements like steel, brick, and exposed concrete harmonize with vintage accents. The ever-shifting material palette continues in the two bathrooms, which have walls and ceilings with different types of tiles. For the private areas, lighter colors, warm wood, and more classical details cater to the wife's preferences. 

When a Sydney couple discussed the redesign of their inner-city, terrace property with Breathe Architecture’s director Jeremy McLeod, they asked for "a house for two introverts living in a world of extroverts." To deliver, McLeod worked with the project's lead architect Daniel Mckenna to remodel the terrace, turning it into Double Life House, a cozy space with a clandestine feel that brings to mind the secret hide-outs of superheroes. By reconfiguring the stairs as a switchback and locating it in the middle section of the house, the architects could fit a slim, tall bathroom between the switchback and the main bedroom. In the bathroom, the shower stall looks up to the open sky. 

When a Sydney couple discussed the redesign of their inner-city, terrace property with Breathe Architecture’s director Jeremy McLeod, they asked for "a house for two introverts living in a world of extroverts." To deliver, McLeod worked with the project's lead architect Daniel Mckenna to remodel the terrace, turning it into Double Life House, a cozy space with a clandestine feel that brings to mind the secret hide-outs of superheroes. By reconfiguring the stairs as a switchback and locating it in the middle section of the house, the architects could fit a slim, tall bathroom between the switchback and the main bedroom. In the bathroom, the shower stall looks up to the open sky. 

When Cecilia Tham and Yoel Karaso of Habitan Architects bought their first-floor apartment in an 1894 block of the Fort Pienc neighborhood of Barcelona in 2005, they knew they were taking a risk. Casa Alí Bei was a bargain because it is afectado ("affected")—–that is, the land is zoned for redevelopment. A baby (Hanna) on the way, the possibility of being evicted, and a tight budget necessitated a canny renovation strategy, yet one that still honored the dazzling turn-of-the-century tile work and ornate moldings. A stone’s throw from Jean Nouvel’s Torre Agbar, the apartment, like the neighborhood, has been reborn as a patchwork of old and new. "When this building was constructed the toilets would have been outside. In our previous place we had a tiny shower in a tiny bathroom that you could barely stretch your arms out in, so we moved here knowing we wanted to make the bathroom something special. We planned this grand freestanding bathtub-and-sink unit with the same materials as the kitchen - plywood and slate," says Tham. 

When Cecilia Tham and Yoel Karaso of Habitan Architects bought their first-floor apartment in an 1894 block of the Fort Pienc neighborhood of Barcelona in 2005, they knew they were taking a risk. Casa Alí Bei was a bargain because it is afectado ("affected")—–that is, the land is zoned for redevelopment. A baby (Hanna) on the way, the possibility of being evicted, and a tight budget necessitated a canny renovation strategy, yet one that still honored the dazzling turn-of-the-century tile work and ornate moldings. A stone’s throw from Jean Nouvel’s Torre Agbar, the apartment, like the neighborhood, has been reborn as a patchwork of old and new. "When this building was constructed the toilets would have been outside. In our previous place we had a tiny shower in a tiny bathroom that you could barely stretch your arms out in, so we moved here knowing we wanted to make the bathroom something special. We planned this grand freestanding bathtub-and-sink unit with the same materials as the kitchen - plywood and slate," says Tham. 

Caroline Place is a minimalist home located in London, United Kingdom, designed by Groupwork + Amin Taha. Surrounded on three sides by eight and nine story mansion blocks shielding it from the heavy traffic on Bayswater Road and tourism on Queensway, Caroline Place is a quiet enclave of late 1950’s terraces north of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. Built with a Modern Northern European sensibility of sharp brick lines and crisp mortar joints layered with softer timber detailing, their interior layouts remained firmly rooted in an earlier English Edwardian tradition.

Caroline Place is a minimalist home located in London, United Kingdom, designed by Groupwork + Amin Taha. Surrounded on three sides by eight and nine story mansion blocks shielding it from the heavy traffic on Bayswater Road and tourism on Queensway, Caroline Place is a quiet enclave of late 1950’s terraces north of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. Built with a Modern Northern European sensibility of sharp brick lines and crisp mortar joints layered with softer timber detailing, their interior layouts remained firmly rooted in an earlier English Edwardian tradition.