What a fulfilling 2019 it has been for the design community! We saw the sixth edition of the Singapore Design Week, which incorporated over 80 programmes and more than 70 partners. We also witnessed the Singapore Design Award’s (SDA) 30th anniversary, honouring outstanding designers from across the world and maintaining its position as the leading design award in Southeast Asia.
As we approach the end of this meaningful year, we raise our heads and look to welcome the year of 2020. Design is subjective and its trends are ever-evolving. Thus, it is important for us to spot these trends and stay ahead of our game. The bathroom is a crucial place in the home to analyse, as modern homes are beginning to place a huge emphasis on the quality of bathrooms. The better the design of the bathroom, the better the design of the home as a whole.
Below, we identify the upcoming design trends in the bathroom, as well as emerging elements such as technology and innovation as part of design:
The bathroom is one more area of the home where traditional boundaries are dissolving
This makes it a part of the home living space. Just as kitchens have merged with the living rooms to create a new social space, so has bathrooms co-joined with bedrooms to offer a private retreat. This requires more attention to be paid to the design, so that the lighting, colours and materials chosen reflect the room’s changing status.
These spaces are essential to the modern consumer today and must not only be functional, it has to cater to individual style and preference as well. With urbanisation, space is becoming scarce and while many people still want a bathtub so they can luxuriate uninterrupted in a long, hot soak, they typically have it only if space permits.
There’s no doubting the allure of a Japanese, hot spring-inspired soak in a bathtub such as one from the INAX S600 LINE. But that’s not the only way to enjoy a restorative hydrotherapy session at home, now that spa experiences are also built into showers.
Digital solutions create a more sensory experience
It also allows for the customisation of functions for a personalised touch. High-tech faucets, smart toilets and 3D metal-printed fixtures are just a handful of examples. The new GROHE Euphoria SmartControl shower system allows consumers to tailor their own experiences at the touch of a button.
Depending on your mood, or time of the day, you can choose a powerful, invigorating spray for an energising start to the morning, or unwind with a relaxing, ‘soft as summer rain’ spray in the evening. The technology ensures that the water temperature too, stays precisely as you like it.
To achieve the desired relaxing ambience and to cater to an increasing need for more convenience and comfort in the bathroom, everything within the space should be intuitive and easy to use. Consumers do not want to have to fiddle with different controls.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is something to keep an eye out for in 2020
It is where consumers link living equipment and sensors to provide themselves with convenience and security. Some advantages of utilising IoT is to visualise energy and water usage, obtain notification of accidents in the bathroom and autonomous control over windows and lightings.
The future smart home will contain several IoT appliances, all detecting human’s behavior and intention. In the case of LIXIL, the GROHE Sense Guard will immediately shut off the household’s water supply whenever a burst pipe or flooded cellar is detected.
Determining the right choice and combination of colours is paramount
In terms of colour choice, white is clean, minimal and timeless, but with comfort, an overarching design goal of bathroom design. New textures are creeping in, such as woodgrain or even authentic wood finishes and earthy tones that are best applied on vanities, fittings and ceramics.
These can add warmth and softness to the necessary hard elements like tiles and tapware. Speaking of which, more and more people are beginning to appreciate tapware with sophisticated colours, finishes and textures, enabling the homeowner to craft a unique statement in their private bathing retreat.
Technology in the bathroom is the key to hygiene
Aside from smart solutions, bathrooms are beginning to integrate advanced fundamental solutions such as flushing technologies, antibacterial technologies, etc. The bathroom may be a retreat for homeowners, but it is also the space where most bacteria are found.
To keep our bathrooms safe, clean and hygienic, it is key for manufacturers to commit and invest resources in innovative hygiene technology for the health of its consumers. American Standard does so by having its HygieneClean System – the new standard of safety in the bathroom, delivered by its powerful flushing technologies plus cutting-edge innovations of Aqua Ceramic and ComfortClean.
Aqua Ceramic is a super-hydrophillic technology which prevents dirt and stains from sticking to ceramic surfaces while ComfortClean involves a revolutionary ceramic glaze of zinc oxide which effectively kills bacteria in the toilet bowl. This is the wonder of technology in the bathroom.
By Antoine Besseyre des Horts, Vice President of Design at LIXIL Water Technology Asia