Is a bathroom without a bathtub technically still a bathroom? Or should we term it a shower room? Or maybe a wet room?
One of the best aspects of building a new house is that you can design your own space. After years of staying in a range of hotel rooms, I kind of had an idea of what I preferred in terms of bathroom style. Luckily for me, my better half agreed to let me take charge in terms of bathroom design.
I also had tons of pictures on Pinterest to inspire me, which actually made it a bit difficult to settle on one design. Eventually the limiting factor was the location of the toilet to facilitate the location of pipes in line with those of the adjoining bathroom. So we worked around this. The result is a clean design using lots of concrete and very little else.
|another door opens...|
|one door closes...|
Indonesian bathrooms are usually limited to a hole in the ground as a toilet and a water holding area with a bucket/jug for washing. The concept of a wash-hand basin and a shower is alien to the average Indonesian. At first, H and A were bewildered with my designs. Luckily, they have had experience building homes for ‘bules’ (friendly Indo term for foreigners) so they eventually got my drift.
As we wanted to keep it simple, we have opted for a tile-free space with concrete as flooring. This, it turns out, is not as simple as pouring concrete, covering it with white cement and polishing. It is a job that requires precision in the mixing and pouring of concrete, lots of man-hours of manual polishing, a good quality sealant and long drying times. We are now experimenting with epoxy paint instead…fingers crossed it all turns out amazing.
|foundation for the dividing wall between shower and toilet|
|the wall comes up|
And contrary to most people’s preference, I opted for a closed bathroom rather than the popular open bathroom Indonesian-style. While it is highly romantic to look up at the stars while showering, the reality is that, being outdoors, means the space is a welcome home to insects and other critters. I respect nature but would rather have an insect-free home, if at all possible in the tropics!
|Sink cabinet - the beginning (my detailed designs with measurements are appended to the wall, just in case!)|
|Sink cabinet - in progress|
|Sink cabinet - completed|
Tip: Ideally buy your sanitary ware before any plumbing or construction is done in the bathroom. This allows the plumber to work out the precise location of all plumbing lines and drain lines.