Soaking Tubs: Taking Relaxation to the Next Level

Posted on | August 29, 2011 | 4 Comments

Not everyone likes a bathtub. But for those who do, this bastion of solitude, and destination of delight, is just the thing to soothe away the aches and pains of a long, hard day. For many, nothing beats the feeling of soaking in a deep tub filled with luxuriously hot, soapy water. For these homeowners, the modern soaking tub is now the top choice when it comes to bathing.

Soaking Tub. Design by Amy Vermillion. Presented by North Carolina Design Online.

Image Courtesy of Martineau Vermillion Interior Design

“Bathrooms as a rule have become less utilitarian and more relaxation driven than bathrooms of yester year.” says Kendra Tardif of Pheasant Hill Designs. “Today, homeowners want to create a beautiful haven for themselves which almost always includes some kind of soaking tub.”

The soaking tub trend is deep rooted in Far Eastern influences and a staple in the spa bathroom experience popular in modern Carolina homes. Popular options include air tubs and Japanese soaking tubs.

Newer tubs are both aesthetically more pleasing with beautiful lines and options such as the infinity tub, and shapes that go beyond oval, including rectangular and even square, but they also integrate new features such as the “air tub.” Full ranges of materials are now available as well, including stainless steel and painted tubs.

The air tub has tiny holes that push air out into the water instead of circulating it through the pipes. This has a wonderful micro-bubble, champagne-like effect that directs bubbles all around the body. From a technical standpoint, air tubs are also very hygienic, since bath water is pumped out of the lines after each use, which allows for better control of bacteria.

“The Japanese tub allows the bather to fully immerse more vertically. With these, the tub can be integrated below the bathroom floor adding to the depth,” says designer Amy Vermillion. Designers are also seeing narrower tubs with the deeper options since they do not need to be as wide if they are deep.

The first question I ask a client doing a remodel, says designer Amy Vermillion, is: “‘Are you a tub person or a shower person?’ It does not make sense for a homeowner to invest in a high-end spa tub when they would prefer to upgrade the shower. That said, when the client really enjoys bathing, we then talk about whether they use the tub functionally to get clean, or if they prefer taking long relaxing soaks. I also always ask if they have any physical limitations or movement challenges, since the shape and height of the tub can be chosen to accommodate their needs.”

Size, shape, material and cost are all major considerations in purchasing a new tub. A beautiful tub will define the space and set the tone for the bathroom. For instance, if you love a sleek, minimalistic look a modern pedestal or stand alone tub would probably appeal to you. If however, you want a more romantic/traditional bath, then perhaps a clawfoot tub would fit the bill.

Kendra concludes, “The biggest benefit of a soaking tub is the amount of space that can be saved in a bathroom. When you try to reconfigure a space for a homeowner, typically they want two things: a larger shower and larger closets. Utilizing a soaking tub allows you to repurpose the space and make better use of the square footage. The second major advantage is the pure aesthetics….they really are beautiful!”

Soaking Tub Bathroom Design by Kendra Tardif, presented by North Carolina Design Online.
Image Courtesy of Pheasant Hill Designs

Amy Vermillion, of the Charlotte firm, Martineau Vermillion Interior Design, approaches each project with a high degree of creativity as she considers the individaul tastes, expectations and needs of her clients.

Kendra Tardif is the principal of Pheasant Hill Designs, a full-service Charlotte based firm specializing in high-end residential interior design as well as the renovation and design of custom kitchens and baths.

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4 Responses to “Soaking Tubs: Taking Relaxation to the Next Level”

  1. Laura Greeno
    September 12th, 2011 @ 2:26 PM

    I want one!

  2. Amy Vermillion - Martineau Vermillion Interior Design
    September 13th, 2011 @ 11:01 AM

    I missed this since I was working in Florida, installing a client’s vacation home.
    Thanks for including me…I think it’s a great post and I liked what Kendra had to say as well.

  3. Liz Hughes
    September 13th, 2011 @ 1:45 PM

    Thank you Amy. I would love a long, relaxing soak right about now. Both of you have designed beautiful bathrooms.

  4. Liz Hughes
    September 13th, 2011 @ 1:46 PM

    So do I!

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