Six Brilliant Bathroom Designs – #5 The Starting Point

IN A HOME BOASTING OLD-WORLD CHARM, A COUPLE BREAK OUTSIDE THEIR COMFORT ZONE AND EMBRACE CONTEMPORARY CHIC IN THEIR MASTER BATHROOM

Written by Blake Miller

It began with the bathtub.

After flipping

An adjacent breakfast bar - one of two in the master suite and bath - allows the homeowners to prepare their morning espresso and  then enjoy it in their nearby private courtyard complete with koi pond
An adjacent breakfast bar – one of two in the master suite and bath – allows the homeowners to prepare their morning espresso and then enjoy it in their nearby private courtyard complete with koi pond

through pages and pages of catalogs, Jan Link finally found the one. A gorgeous hand-carved gray granite soaking tub, honed smooth on the inside and left rough and rustic on the out

side. That was just the starting point of the 400-square-foot master bathroom in teh Charlotte, North Carolina, home she shares with her husband, Terry.

The art-collecting couple began building their home in the spring of 2006 after selling their previous Charlotte residence, a circa-1939 home that was functional yet very traditional. This

time, though, they toyed with a more transitional interior and eventually settled on an old-world decor that mirrored the look and feel of the majority of the

The 3,500-pound granite bathtub was the starting point of the master bath's interior. Natural morning light often streams through the windows behind the bathtub, highlighting the dramatic crystal Schonbek chandelier.
The 3,500-pound granite bathtub was the starting point of the master bath’s interior. Natural morning light often streams through the windows behind the bathtub, highlighting the dramatic crystal Schonbek chandelier.

homes in their golf course community.

But always intrigued by a more modern decor, the Links wanted to tackle a more contemporary interior in their master bathroom. Fearing their personal design aesthetics would skew too modern, they enlisted the help of interior designer Robbie Warren to guide them through the process.

To Warren, the bathtub was far from pushing the design too far.

To complement the bathtub while also creating a peaceful, spa retreat, the Links chose a monochromatic-like blue, black, and gray color palette and built on the interior from there. Travertine flooring honed smooth by Walker Zanger in “Azul” was laid throughout the space while sleek cherry cabinetry in a slate finish to match the wall paint color was installed by DCI Home Resource in Charlotte. Found iron candlebras-turned-sconces were affixed, and sophisticated “Absolute Black” granite countertops were installed, while a dramatic Schonbek crustal chandelier was added to the mosaic-like barrel ceiling above the bathtub.

In the spa shower – complete with steam room amenities and none massaging jets – Warren suggested skinny ceramic subway tile in shades of blues and greens laid on the vertical rather than horizontal, resulting in an Oriental feel. That Asian accent functioned as a seamless transition from the master bath to an adjacent private courtyard. It’s there that the couple moved the home’s original fiberglass spa that was to be installed in the master bath and instead turned into a Japanese soaking tub and filled it with goldfish and koi.

Inside, the feeling is similar – every morning, natural light streams through an oversize window behind the tub and glass French doors leading to the spacious courtyard, providing a cool, relaxing look and feel. Two breakfast bars allow the Links to prepare their morning espresso or evening martini, which they enjoy in their courtyard or in the steam shower.