Spa Tower: Fusion of Technology and The Past
The Pantheon, Rome
I love to travel. Travel refreshes my spirit, especially when I visit Europe. I love Italy… the wonderful towers of Sienna… the colors of the Italian countryside. In fact, these all played a part in my recent bathroom design for the Kohler Design Center in Kohler, Wisconsin.
I was inspired to create Spa Tower by the Pantheon in Rome, which began as a Roman temple and later became a Catholic church. The Pantheon has a huge coffered and volumetric ceiling. It just feels so spiritual, with its oculus (circular light) opening to the sky.
I wanted to take the spiritual concept of being enveloped and embraced and elevate the idea of bathing to the level of a Michelangelo work of art. When I first saw the space I had to work with, I noticed the 8-foot ceiling. I knocked on it, realized there was space above the ceiling panels, and decided to open the ceiling to a soaring 14 feet.
To me, water is a regenerative substance, making bathing and cleansing a kind of rebirth. I thought it would be neat to install two handheld showerheads, so parents can shower their kids or even the family dog easily, almost like a new-age mudroom! I used waterproof indoor-outdoor fabric to create curtains that separate the shower from the rest of the space.
The entire space is decorated in linen and gray tones – the soothing colors of the Renaissance. I’m fascinated by the fusion of technology and history, looking backward and forward at the same time. So I used Kohler’s DTV™ digital showering system, which lets you choose and set your shower spray pattern, pressure and temperature. It’s a digitized bathing experience inspired by the Renaissance!
There are a few ways you can bring this look into your bath. Search online for an image of the Pantheon and have it enlarged – big enough to fill a wall. You can retile the tub surround in monochromatic tones, or use similar fabric to create a shower curtain. Or how about hanging a map of the world over your tub, and using red pushpins to indicate places you’ve been, and green ones to show where you hope to visit?
If you’re thinking about a kitchen or bath remodel, the Kohler Design Center in Kohler, Wisconsin is a great place to visit. It’s about an hour north of Milwaukee on the grounds of The American Club hotel and spa resort.
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