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Design for shared spaces

Design for shared spaces

It’s an age-old dilemma faced by young and old, in homes large and small, in the city and in the country: How can two adults happily share one bathroom?

It has often been said in jest that separate bathrooms is key to a happy marriage, Grohe, the world’s leading single-brand manufacturer and supplier of kitchen and bath fittings, knows that this might be true. But when that just isn’t possible, some strategic planning, a good design and compromising can make a single bathroom home work.

Decide What’s Important

A bathroom can be viewed as a spa-like retreat, a place to linger and luxuriate, others focus on its efficiency and functionality, zipping in and out as quickly as possible. Here are some questions to consider when designing a shared bathroom:

  1. Do you have specific wishes for the décor: different color scheme, materials, flooring or lighting?
  2. What amenities would be ideal in the bathroom? Perhaps a radio or television, chromatherapy, heated towel racks or flooring, candles or plants.
  3. What type of sink and storage is needed?
  4. What size and type of faucet is ideal?
  5. What about the shower head? Is a head or hand shower preferred?
  6. Is a tub crucial?

Bathroom Design

Think of the bathroom as you would any room in the house, with its own color palette, accessories and furnishings tying in with the mood you want to project. For example, she suggests trying soft celadon or a creamy yellow for a spa feel or pure white sparked with crimson and navy for a more communal atmosphere. Properly matted and framed for a damp environment, art can add so much, as can big green plants or a terry cloth-covered chair. And no matter the style don’t forget proper lighting! Install lighting with dimmers, so you can see everything clearly and also relax serenely. The bathroom really is a unique place and should be decorated with care and imagination.


Floor warming mats and towel racks will make a big difference in a cold climate. Someone who has never had such luxuries will wonder how they ever lived without them after a few days. The same holds for quality towels. The higher the thread count, the more absorbent.

For news junkies, a radio or television makes sense, and for the aesthetically oriented, a lovely bureau to hold bath, beauty and cleaning supplies with a vase of flowers on top would make them happy.

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