NOT so long ago, your bathroom was the sort of place you dipped in and out of pretty quickly. There was no such thing as dwell time, just bath time. And it didn’t last long.
Today, all that has changed. Talk to the people who shape our 21st century homes, and they describe the modern-day bathroom as a “cocoon”, a “retreat” and a place in which to linger and luxuriate.
And while other, more public parts of the home have become showpieces designed to impress your dinner guests, the bathroom remains your own private sanctuary-cum-fortress.
The biggest transformation has been in what the modern bathroom is made of. Gone are the chipboard cupboards and the plastic shower trays. In their place are carefully matched wall panels made of Calacatta marble, fog-free make-up mirrors and freestanding baths.
Not jammed up against the wall, either, but standing proudly in the middle of the room.
Such is the demand for bathroom luxury, at the top end of the market, that experienced Mayfair estate agent Peter Wetherell (three decades in London W1) has made a bold prediction. He envisages the cost of a typically sized bathroom, in his part of town, doubling over the next five to 10 years. What’s more, the seriously upwardly mobile homeowner doesn’t have just one of these ultra-modern bathrooms, but two, or even three.
“As far as the prime central London market is concerned, less than one bathroom for each bedroom is fundamentally too few,” declares Bella Tellwright, of Notting Hill estate agents Crayson.
“In an ideal world, a fivebedroom house should have a minimum of two en-suite bath or shower rooms, plus one family bathroom.”
No doubt about it, says Robin Chatwin, head of Savills in southwest London. Buyers can’t get enough bathing opportunities.
“The appetite for multiple bathrooms continues to grow. “It’s not uncommon to see an extra bathroom added by sacrificing a small bedroom,” Chatwin says. © The Telegraph