German Design in the Bathroom

When you think of German design, you probably think of BMW or Mercedes-Benz. Not bathrooms. But a recent trip to a bath showroom in Germany proved to me that German designers are just as successful at applying ingenuity in this arena as they are with the well known cars. Minimal, high-tech design looks great in the bathroom, where less really is more. All products spotted at LivingHouse unless noted otherwise.

1. Don't like the look of toilets? This suite from Falper will keep yours discreetly hidden away.
2. Of course, toilets don't have to be ugly. Here's a pretty toilet/bidet pair, available from unverwechselbad.
3. Although the object on the right looks like some kind of garden sculpture, it's actually an outdoor shower (from Conmoto) that can be connected to your garden hose.
4. Spotted at the Dornbracht showroom: powdercoated white faucet + carrara marble = simple, modern, gorgeous. Plus the powdercoat won't show fingerprints like chrome will.
5. The wood splash, marble countertop, and minimalist hardware in this setup say classy bachelor pad to me. Fittings by Dornbracht, marble countertop with intergral sink by Neutra.

6. In keeping with the recent trend we've seen towards marble everything, here's a gorgeous freestanding marble tub from Neutra.
7 & 8. These washbasins and freestanding tubs, by designer Patricia Urquiola for Axor Hansgrohe, were inspired by old-fashioned washbasins, which had handles so people could carry them from place to place. The new designs aren't portable, but they put the 'handlebars' to good use as towel holders.
9 & 10. I had a teacher in architecture school who was continually urging us to 'redefine' things. This? This redefines the faucet. The water comes out of the opening in the top, and the lever is on the bottom. From Dornbracht's Elemental Spa collection, spotted at the Dornbracht showroom.

11. This shower application from Dornbracht is composed of different parts that can be turned on all at once, or controlled according to a pre-set program. Here it's shown integrated with a lighting panel that changes color throughout the program.
12. Germans know small spaces. This powder-coated metal sink from Alape has an especially small profile and is pratically indestructible.
13. Another low-profile sink, less than a foot deep.
14 & 15. This black powdercoated faucet by Dornbracht has a cool, futuristic vibe.

16 & 17. This green-veined onyx stone surround is beautiful and luxurious. From Koerner.
18 & 19. This glass countertop, from Falper, has a matte finish that feels especially pleasing to the touch. The gently curved bowl merges seamlessly with the countertop, making for a super-easy cleanup.

(Images: Nancy Mitchell)

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