New (Huge) Contemporary Baths

Five spectacular spa-style master bath sanctuaries.



New (Huge) Contemporary Baths

 

Five Spectacular spa-style master bath sanctuaries.

 

No more Plain-Jane johns, these magnificent master bathrooms have been refashioned into ultra-luxurious private retreats.

 

By Laurie Yarnell

 

East Coast Thoroughbred: One Couple’s Ralph Lauren-esque Refuge

Several years ago, local developer Kip Konigsberg and his wife, Kathy, turned a low-slung ’70s house in Purchase into a stunning 12,000-square-foot center-hall Colonial. Then they asked Tarrytown-based interior designers Susan Anthony and Maureen Wright of Anthony-Wright Interiors to transform 250 square feet of it into a luxurious master bath. (A typical master bathroom is 100 square feet.)

 

While the couple wanted their four kids to be able to come in out and of the suite’s sitting room, they also wanted the bathroom to remain their own personal refuge—a place, says Anthony, “where they could really kick back and just de-stress,” as they do in their Jackson Hole, Wyoming, vacation home. “We wanted the warm and comfortable feeling of being out West but with a look more compatible with a center-hall Colonial on the East Coast.”

 

Kathy Konigsberg likes the Polo-Ralph Lauren look and the warmth of wood. She is not a fan of granite and glitz. As a result, the Konigsberg bathroom features lots of wood and, no surprise, Ralph Lauren wallpaper. 

 

Taupe-colored honed limestone, interspersed with small cream-colored mosaic tiles, covers the floor. Savoy twin sinks and a six-by-four-foot Kohler soaking tub were installed as were nickel gooseneck faucets and a hand shower by Etoile. All surfaces, fixtures, and fittings are from Waterworks.

 

Declares Kathy Konigsberg, “Our bathroom is exactly what we wanted.”

 

Time-Honored Haven: Marrying Beauty and Function

Our objective was to marry beauty with function,” says interior designer Carole Freehauf of a nice-sized bathroom in a 1920s brick Georgian Colonial in Pelham that the homeowner wanted turned into a soothing sanctuary with lots of storage space. Freehauf heads an eponymous interior design company in Pelham Manor.

For beauty, the walls were painted a soft khaki. They also sport glass tiles of a soothing aquamarine. And the floor has a white limestone tile with an inlaid
border of soft blue-green glass mosaic tiles. All surfaces are from Waterworks, as are the polished nickel and crystal fittings.

 

For function, extensive custom-designed cabinetry with plenty of storage space was added. Made of hard maple wood and painted shell-white with egg-and-dart molding and fluted pilasters or columns, these built-in cabinets from the private Bilotta Collection line “are just what you would expect in a big Georgian brick Colonial home,” says Jim Bilotta, president of Bilotta Kitchens & Bath, headquartered in Mamaroneck. He was the project’s construction manager. 

 

The result? “It has such a restful feeling,” says the homeowner. “A lot of people use the word ‘spa’ to describe it, and I do feel like I’m on vacation when I use it.”

 

Flush with Possibilities: The Plumbing Pro’s Personal Space

If your job was to design and install bathrooms, what would yours look like? Take a peek at Jonas Weiner’s master bath in his Katonah home.

 

Weiner, co-owner of Yorktown-based Best Plumbing Tile & Stone, grew up in the family’s plumbing supply business. (“When I wanted to go to Woodstock in 1969, I had to work half the summer at Best first,” he says.) When, nine years ago, Weiner decided to remodel the 220-square-foot master bath in his 5,200-square-foot traditional Federal home, he put all his knowledge—and resources—to good work.

 

Weiner and his wife, Sharon, wanted to “close the world out and create a space just for the two of us,” he says. A vacation at The American Club, a AAA five-diamond Wisconsin hotel owned by the Kohler Company of bath and kitchen fame, sparked their imagination. “The bathroom in our suite was spectacular, and I recall thinking that we should have a place like that in our own house.” To make his wish a reality, Weiner turned to architect David Graham of Ossining. “It was both interesting and intimidating to collaborate with someone whose business is bathrooms,” Graham confesses. “But there was a real synergy in our working together.”

 

The outcome? A soothing sanctuary in which the materials, including dark green marble countertops, off-white stone floors, and a Bertch Bath’s Tiffany series wood vanity were supplied by, natch, Best.  

 

The sanctuary is fully wired for TV and sound, and sports a six-by-four-foot Kohler whirlpool tub, a San Tropez bidet, and a San Raphael Power Lite toilet with a heated seat. “If you like your car seat heated, you gotta love a heated toilet seat,” Weiner says. The floor and tub deck have built-in radiant heat. “You can sit on the deck and get into the tub all nice and warm, and then grab a warm towel when you get out of the tub. It’s a very luxurious and comforting feeling.” And a design plus:“This type of heat eliminates the need for any heating vents, baseboard, or any other negative design elements.”

Another clever design element: Robern’s Designlogic bath storage cabinet with a built-in mirror defogger and interior electrical outlets, perfect for recharging cellphones, shavers, and electric toothbrushes.   

 

Sharon Weiner’s contributions to the room include a Queen Anne-influenced antique vanity bench which belonged to her mother, as well as a wrought-iron bench she found at a local nursery, now used to hold stacks of fluffy towels. “This bathroom is where we spend a lot of our time relaxing,” reports Sharon.

 

Out Of The Blue: An Oasis of Caribbean Cool

Donna London of Chappaqua loves color. So when she decided to completely redo her 150-square-foot master bath, she knew what she didn’t want: “Basic ivory or anything so bland.”

 

What London did want—and ultimately got—was a brightly colored room with a Caribbean look, just like the aqua glass tile she spotted on an initial visit with her interior designer, Carol DeBear, to Waterworks in Scarsdale. “The whole design idea evolved from that tile,” says DeBear of DeBear Design, Inc., also in Scarsdale.

London’s walls and ceiling were painted a light aqua using a glaze technique to suggest clouds. For more color, a Kravet chair was upholstered in an Osborne & Little fabric of bold, bright colors. 

 

The floor, too, is colorful—with eight-by-eight-foot solid turquoise concrete tiles which alternate with a lighter-colored tile of terrazzo (crushed marble and concrete). And the shower wall features an eye-popping plaid design comprising dark and light-colored turquoise tiles. All tiles are from Waterworks. Everything else in the room is white—from the glazed maple cabinetry, custom made by Studio Marchand, Inc., in Yonkers, to the marble countertops from Marble Works Design Team, Inc., of Yonkers, and the twin Kohler sinks from Best Plumbing Tile & Stone. The bathroom also includes a flat-screen TV. 

 

Has London grown a tad tired of turquoise? “Not at all,” she says. “The only turquoise missing is an ocean view.”

 

Classic Retreat: Traditional Ambience with High-Tech Amenities

This exquisite 250-square-foot master bath represents a collaborative effort by architect Cal Petrescu; bathroom designer Jeanine Pagano, a principal of Bath n’ Bagno; and the homeowners, all of Scarsdale. It was designed as part of a full renovation and expansion of a 100-year-old, 8,000-square-foot grand Tudor Revival house. “The homeowners wanted a big open bathroom but one still in character with the home’s architecture,”says Petrescu.

 

To create an authentic Tudor feel, such details as crown moldings, cottage-style window casements, and custom wainscoting, all painted an off-white, were added. The walls were painted a light celadon green. Traditional-looking surfaces include a tile floor in a classic basket-weave design, and tumbled marble on the tub deck, walls, and shower.

 

The homeowners requested four “must-haves”: 

(1) a steam shower large enough for two to shower separately but simultaneously;

(2) a separate “water closet” area;

(3) a large soaking bathtub; 

(4) a double sink vanity.

 

To help preserve the room’s Old World charm while fulfilling the first two requests, a high-tech thermostatic shower (with “his-and-hers” thermostatic controls and multiple shower heads) and an American Standard toilet were installed in two separate areas. To meet the third request (a large tub): a Bainultra hydrotherapy-soaking tub was installed. The last request—for a double sink vanity—was met with one of vintage design by Vanico. From Bath n’ Bagno, it features a mammoth dark cherry-wood cabinet and Emtek crystal knobs.

 

“It’s actually very utilitarian,” says the homeowner of her new master bath. “It’s not frou-frou or over-the-top with insane mosaics and chandeliers. It’s really like another family room, with the whole family hanging out there.”

 

 

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