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After a stay at Manhattan’s swish Gramercy Park Hotel, homeowners Lisa and Keith Miller returned to their abode with the suite life fresh in their minds. They envisioned a crisp, clean high-contrast space, and designer Reena Sotropa, along with her senior designer, Alanna Dunn, was happy to oblige. Some space planning (think 11-floor plan revisions) and a bold black and white aesthetic netted the couple a cool Calgary bathroom that’s in sync with a glam New York state of mind.
The mash-up of black and white with warm metals creates a dynamic composition. “We wanted to warm up the space with brass accents,” says Alanna. “Lisa spotted these faucets in a local showroom and fell in love with them. We carried their finish through to all the fixtures. I love the juxtaposition of a mellow patina in such a bright white space.” The front of the vanity was painted black as a sharp foil to all the brass, as well as the marble countertop; a dozen drawers maximize storage space.
“We chose matte black hexagonal floor tiles to help hide water marks and dust,” says Reena, who loves to mix patterns in her designs. All the tile treatments, including the marble basket-weave shower floor tiles and subway wall tiles, are tied together with charcoal-coloured grout.
The black and white palette is dramatically at play in the industrial-look shower, which boasts an ingenious decor idea: applied metal mullions on the outside and painted on ones on the inside. “This eliminates individual panes of glass on the interior so cleaning is easy,” says Reena. A free-standing tub replaced the existing overpowering corner whirlpool bath. “Adding marble to the shower niche breaks up the expanse of the subway tiles and introduces a natural material for a bit of warmth,” says Alanna. “We also wanted to create a beautiful backdrop for the plumbing fixtures, which were a splurge.”
While the two vanity mirrors are undeniable showstoppers, they don’t overwhelm the space. “I love that they are essentially frameless, so they don’t compete with the warm metal finishes on the plumbing fixtures and sconces,” says Alanna.