Words by Superior Renovations

Bathroom is usually the smallest room in a house, but it can also be a haven if modelled well. This article will focus on bathroom design which works well for NZ homes based on the upcoming bathroom trends.

If you are looking at renovating your bathroom next year then get some inspiration from the latest trends in the bathroom renovation industry across the globe. We will be sharing bathroom design trends from bathtubs and showers to vanities and flooring. Bathroom designs is no longer just functional with plain tiled floors, white walls, a plain shower and vanity. Today you have various options in terms in terms of textures, pattens, prints, finishes and styles.

Most people often aim at including atleast one bold element in their bathroom to give it some character. If you are looking at remodelling your bathroom then this list is sure to spark some inspiration for your project. The list will include a bathroom design style for every taste starting from modern to Vintage.

Trend #1 Black making a statement

In the recent years we have seen that Grey has been a more popular choice instead of Black. Often people choose grey as a dominant colour for accents and flooring. Black however has seen a rise in popularity with more people wanting to make a bolder statement within their bathroom design. Grey will however still remain popular but expect to see more darker tones of grey or black for future bathroom designs.

Black can be integrated in many forms within a bathroom. If you have a smaller bathroom then you can use black for your light fixtures, mirror and tapware with matte finishes. If you have a neutral toned bathroom then adding black tapware and light fixtures will create a dramatic effect in your bathroom. If you have a larger bathroom then you can also look at adding black fixtures like a bathtub or vanity. Black is however not a popular choice for tiles. Large grey tiled floors will continue to see an upward trend in the coming years.

Wooden vanity with a black rim in Titirangi
Wooden vanity with a black rim in Titirangi
All black fixtures in Cockle Bay
All black fixtures in Cockle Bay

Trend #2 Brass and Gold

Brass and gold have always been associated with vintage bathroom designs. Gold accents work great with vintage designs, but they can also be incorporated into contemporary and modern designs. Gold and brass are no longer a design of the past. The gold and brass hues of today will add a lovely warmth to any bathroom. They add a sense of character and luxury to your bathroom space.

The past years have seen sleek, polished, and modern shiny fixtures. Homeowners are moving away from this trend as it does not add any warmth to the bathroom. Shiny sleek metal fixtures lack character and make your bathroom look cold.

Instead the growing trend has been to incorporate brass and cold hues in matte finishing for taps, sinks and lighting.

Gold fixtures used throughout the bathroom in Westmere
Gold fixtures used throughout the bathroom in Westmere
Brass sink used in Stanmore Bay

Trend #3 Technology

Technology is integrated everywhere within our lives. So why should bathrooms remain behind? The whole point of technology is to make our standard of living better. We have seen smart toilets and automatic taps in the past owing to the growing trend in Japan. Smart toilets, automatic taps and deodorisers have become a norm in hotels and airports. More and more homeowners are integrating smart toilets and automatic taps into their bathroom design.

2021 will see technology integrated throughout the bathroom and not just toilets or automatic taps. We will be seeing a rise is automatic showers and Bluetooth systems. With automatic showers, you will be able to make sure that the water is already hot by the time you get home. With a blue tooth system you can now listen to music when having a shower. You can also now install a voice activated system where you can alter light and water settings with just speaking out loud.

Modern bathrooms are becoming more of a place of relaxation and technology is becoming an integral part of it.

Trend #4 Tile Patterns and shapes

White square tiles are a thing of the past. If you are renovating your bathroom then you will hardly choose a white tile owing to the far superior options available in tiles today. Tiles now come in various hues, designs, patterns and textures. They can mimic any material or style owing to the advancement in technology.

You can now cut tiles in various shapes and sizes which adds to the number of things to choose from. 2021 bathrooms will feature bright tiles in various shapes which will be used as accent and as features.

Shower walls and backsplashes are the two most common areas where you will see bright and textured tiles. They will not be limited to floors.

We installed Artisan tiles from Tile depot for the floors which were combined with a floating vanity to give this bathroom a classic contemporary look. The wooden looking vanity with a black rim adds some warmth to the bathroom (Project in Titirangi)
This bathroom in Hillsborough was fully renovated with Mosaic tiles used for the floors.

Trend #5 Industrial styled sinks, lighting and vanities

Industrial style homes were first inspired by the apartments of New York. Industrial style is also sometimes interchangeably used as ‘New York’ style apartments. It is however not to everyone’s taste. Most people do not use an industrial style throughout their home. Instead certain elements of the industrial style is integrated into their renovation design.

Expect to see a growing trend of industrial elements incorporated into bathroom designs in NZ. One of the most popular industrial elements have been sinks, light fixtures and taps. If you love the style then you can even think of integrating an industrial vanity. These elements can easily be integrated into any bathroom style by choosing wooden and matte black industrial fixtures. This trend especially works well in apartments and Urban areas such as Auckland.

Trend #6 Wooden accents are back

People have always loved wooden elements in their home. Wooden accents exude warmth into any room. As mentioned earlier, people are straying away from white and shiny bathrooms. Wooden accents have been on the rise in the last 2 years with most people featuring them as vanities. Wooden accents are popular as they can be incorporated into any time of style. Wooden looking tiles have also become popular recently.

MDF melteca wooden looking vanity in St Heliers
MDF Melteca wooden looking cabinets in Westmere
Floating wooden vanity in Titirangi

Trend #7 Adding a pop of colour

Like we discussed above, white bathrooms have a very clinical look to them. They do not exude any warmth or add any design element to your bathroom. A growing trend in bathrooms has been to add a pop of colour to otherwise neutral bathrooms. This is easily done by installing bright coloured light fixtures or tapware.

2021 however will see a rise in colourful backsplashes and accent walls to draw attention to a bathroom. This can either be done by painting one of your walls in a bright shade or simply installing textured and bright tiles as accent walls or feature strips.

In our interview with Ruth from Tile depot, she talks about how many Aucklanders are using their Casablanca collection to add a pop of colour to their bathrooms. The Casablanca collection comes in warm red, orange, green and many other colours. If you are not quite ready for a bold accent wall then you can still add some colour in your bathroom by installing a strip of bright or textured tiles on an otherwise neutral wall.

Green Casablana tiles installed in one of the walls of the shower to add some drama in the bathroom (Bathroom renovation in Westmere)
Mary Stuart’s Spanish style bathroom in Stanmore Bay features blue painted walls and colourful mosaic tiles to add a ‘pop’ of colour to her bathroom

Trend #8 Compact storage spaces

Since bathroom is a small space, it often starts looking messy and cluttered. Even if you are not a minimalistic person, you should think about keeping your bathroom clutter free to encourage a relaxed environment. Compact and hidden storage solutions are readily available and will make your bathroom appear more open and organised if integrated within your bathroom design.

It is often easy to forget about storage when renovating a bathroom. People often get carried away with the beautiful fixtures that they can choose from. When renovating a bathroom think about the functionality and your lifestyle. Storage solutions should be one of the major factors that should be taken into consideration during a renovation.

Trend #9 Pale tones of pink

Blush has been a popular choice in bathrooms for quite some time. Blush walls matched with matte metallic fixtures can really transform your bathroom into a chic space. In 2021 you can expect to see modern bathrooms in shades of blush paired with rose gold fixtures and tapware. If you are not ready to commit to rose gold or blush for the whole bathroom, it is still a great colour to add as feature walls or accents.

Pink toned bathrooms can transform a bathroom into a clean and modern space

Trend #10 Advanced Mirrors and sleek lines

There has been a growing trend for sleeker bathrooms especially in apartments of Urban areas. People want their homes to reflect a kind of urban, modern and sleek look. This theme is carried forward in their bathrooms which are sleeker than before. Such bathrooms usually have technology integrated within the design and mirrors are not far behind.

Mirrors now have anti fog technology which is especially convenient to do your toilette after your hot shower. They also have smart touch buttons which enable you to switch a light on at the rim of the mirrors. These mirrors have a back light running all around the mirror which can be adjusted in intensity with a touch of your finger. USB charging stations are also increasingly been seen in bathrooms.

Anti-fog mirror installed with LED backlighting and a touch button in our Epsom home renovation
This bathroom renovation in Parnell was renovated to make it look luxurious and modern which was in line with our client’s urban lifestyle. The mirror installed had an LED anti-fog mirror with a touch button on it. The black floating shelves with sleek li

Trend #11 Bigger and comfier

Our changing lifestyles also means that we have changed how we live within our house. Separate toilets and bathrooms were always preferred even a few decades ago. People now prefer to have ensuites in their homes which means that there is more space to work with. Quite a few of our clients now prefer to demolish the wall between their toilet and bathroom in order to convert them into an ensuite.

This means that you can now install bigger bathtubs and showers within your bathroom design. Bigger bathtubs means that you relax more comfortably and indeed make your bathroom a place of serenity after a long days work. Open showers have also become increasingly popular compared to older boxed in plastic shower boxes. The growing trend has been to make your bathroom look open and uncluttered. Having open showers or wet areas makes your bathroom look spacious. If you are not yet ready for a wet area in your bathroom then think about installing showers with glass doors that go from the ground till the ceiling.

standing bathtub was incorporated in this ensuite in this bathroom renovation in West Harbour
Spacious shower integrated in this bathroom design for a renovation in Westmere
A smaller freestanding bathtub installed in this Ellerslie bathroom renovation
A waterproofed wet area created behind the toilet to make the bathroom look less congested (Bathroom renovation in Epsom)

Trend #12 Floating bathroom vanities

As we discussed above, contemporary and bathrooms have seen a growing trend in the past few years. These designs often feature floating vanities and shelves. Floating shelves however are now being integrated in all types of bathroom designs. As technology improves bathroom suppliers are making floating vanities with traditional, transitional and industrial styles as well.

Floating vanities make the area look less cumbersome and increases storage underneath them.

Floating vanity in Papatoetoe bathroom renovation
Floating wooden vanity in Albany bathroom renovation

Trend #13 Underfloor heating systems and lights

Adding underfloor heating is not seen as a luxury anymore. The growing trend for bathroom designs has been to make them as comfortable as possible. Hence most recently renovated bathrooms in Auckland now feature underfloor heating which cost about $2500. This might feel like its an expense but the comfort that they offer in winter months is immeasurable.

Moreover, you can install underfloor heating under any time of flooring that you choose. You can install it under concrete, tile, Vinyl, wood or tile. You no longer must tip toe or wear warm slippers when walking on tiled bathroom floors. You can also install heating lights on the ceiling for cold winters to add more warmth in your bathroom. This will cost you around $600.

Read more…

18 Top Bathroom tiling trends in Auckland

Trend #14 Textures and patterns on walls

Textured and patterned wall tiles do not have to be synonyms to wallpaper. Wallpapers are a thing of the past as they are hard to maintain. Wallpapers however do have an advantage because they come in various patters and designs which can add considerable character to a bathroom.

Instead of wallpapers the trend will be to use textured and patterned tiles on the walls to add some drama into a bathroom. Tile depot has a range of Artisan tiles/ patterned tiles that can be used as feature walls for bathrooms.

Mosaic Tiles installed around the mirror in Stanmore Bay
Spanish style Mosaic tiles in Stanmore Bay
A combination of subway tiles and Casablanca green tiles in a glass shower (Project in Westmere)

Trend #15 Larger tiles

Contrary to popular belief, large tiles make a small bathroom look larger. This is because with larger tiles you will have lesser grout lines which means lesser ‘breaks’ on the bathroom floors. Ruth from Tile depot explains that 600 by 600 or 600 by 900 tiles are becoming increasingly popular with Auckanders and this trend is seeing an upward demands.

Large 600 by 600 tiles used on the floors
Large 600 by 900 tiles used on the floors

Read more…

Ellerslie bathroom renovation with large 600 by 600 tiles used on the floors

Papatoetoe bathroom renovation with large 600 by 600 tiles used on the floors

Greenlane bathroom renovation with large 600 by 600 tiles used on the floors

Further Resources

  1. Ideas for Bathroom renovations in our bathroom renovation gallery of bathrooms we have renovated in Auckland
  2. Ideas for Kitchen renovations in our kitchen renovation gallery for kitchens we have renovated in Auckland
  3. Featured projects and Client stories to see specifications on some of the projects.
  4. Real client stories from Auckland
Recommended reading