We work with a lot of clients who want a spa experience from their new bathroom. When they talk with our designers, we make sure to listen to what they say about how they live and what their tastes are. But there’s one critical aspect that not all of our clients have considered in enough detail: the flooring.
It’s easy to understand why bathroom flooring doesn’t get enough attention – some of the things I’m about to share don’t come through in the wonderful design photography we all enjoy. It’s so easy to get distracted by delightful fixtures and finishes – or irritated by your family’s toilet tissue roll habits. But bathroom flooring is key to not just looking at a beautiful bathroom, but actually living with it, and relying on it as a space of relaxation.
Think about it: you’ve just had a wonderful bath in your perfect bathtub. There are candles, maybe some music. You’re clean and happy and carefree, and then you step out of the tub onto a freezing cold floor! Yikes! It’s startling and uncomfortable – and you can say goodbye to your relaxed mood.
What Makes a Bathroom Spa
Spa bathrooms are about how they make you feel. Visual beauty is part of that, and it’s essential to set the mood. But you can’t forget the tactile dimension, and what goes on the floor has a big impact in a space where we’re barefoot. Our feet have as many nerves as our hands, and are just as sensitive.
Warming Up With Radiant Floor Heating
Most people know that tiles are a great choice in the bathroom because they are undamaged by splashes are easy to wipe up. Whether you choose ceramic, stone or marble tiles, don’t forget to invest in radiant floor heating underneath. Even in summer, tile tends to be cold except on the hottest summer days.
Radiant floor heating sounds more complex than it is. An electrical coil is integrated with the subfloor before the tiles are laid down. It requires some extra work to install, but it’s an essential step in creating the comfort level essential to an environment whose purpose is to provide relaxation.
Another aspect to keep in mind is how the tiles feel to the touch. When you’re shopping, run your hands over the samples in the showroom – are they powdery soft or harsh and gritty? Choosing tiles that work for your colour scheme and sense of touch adds complexity, but it’s worth it. You don’t need to worry about this aspect as much for any wall tiles, but it’s critical for floor tiles.
There’s also the safety element to consider, especially if seniors are using the space. Floor tiles should not be too glassy smooth for safety reasons, as they can be slippery if your feet are wet. If you’re unsure, consult with the salesperson.
I hope I’ve given you some food for thought while you’re thinking about what you want from your perfect bathroom. While you’re dreaming of colours and fixtures and wonderfully fluffy towels, don’t forget that relaxation starts with your feet on the ground. It will make the difference between a bathroom that looks wonderful and one that truly is wonderful.
Do you have any hints or tips for bathroom flooring? I’d love to hear them!