The Bathroom Dilemma

Bathrooms are often the measuring stick of how well designed a space is. When rating restaurants or other public facilities do you not minus points for sub-standard restrooms and add points if they wowed you? Your house guest does the same.

Thankfully the bathroom has come a long way from the outhouse.  The modern bathroom now boasts features such as spas, whirlpools, saunas and deluxe showers.  It no longer simply cleans you; it relaxes, rejuvenates, refreshes and pampers the mind, body and soul. From the latrine to temperature adjusting toilet seats and even toilets than can wash and gentle blow dry your buns. Trust me, someone will soon figure out how to let it powder it as well.  Yes your bathroom can do so much more.

However with all these advancements, the bathroom is the most complained about room for the discerning Jamaican. The most frequent complaints are that bathrooms are too small, lack warmth and function, and what’s up with the 24”x 24” bathroom window. When the outhouse became an in-house, it was a little more that a relocation to dispense of the nightly chamber pot use and the sunrise waste disposal duties. It was the joy of running water, and instant flush. During its infancy basic standards were create that made the recommended minimum bathroom size 5’-0” x 8’-0”.  This worked then, when the bathroom was a standard sink, toilet and bathtub.

Today the standard sink can be a vanity, makeup station, personal styling and grooming area and a work of art. The standard bathtub can now be a multi-user Jacuzzi or walk-in bath for the elderly and physically impaired. Standard showers can be super-sized and fitted to provide hydro-massages or your own at home sauna. These are just a few amenities the modern bathroom can offer. Yet in the majority of Jamaican homes bathrooms are still being constructed at minimum standards.

If building or planning on building do not limit yourself!  I advise that you look at your lifestyle, write down your bathrooms dreams, call a Construction Design Specialist like ourselves (peter e designs) and frankly discuss your needs with us and your Architect.  Do this that your wishes inspire and dictate the design of your space to function around you and infrastructure can be put in to accommodate your dreams.  Why is this important? I recently went into a house where the home owner decided on a Jacuzzi in a bathroom way too small for it. The result, (without any exaggeration) was a pedestal sink overhanging the Jacuzzi, so that to comfortable use the sink one would have to stand straddled with one foot inside the tub and one on the floor. Tragic!

 See the difference of a little more space?

Never use your hard earn money to build a “catastrophe in concrete”. Remember when it comes to bathrooms a far superior product will result from planning the space to fit the amenities you want, rather than just mapping space to later decide what you can fit in it.

Peter E

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