For a start, the heated towel rail (HTR) is no longer a hotel luxury, it’s becoming a prevalent accessory in the home and a hot trend in 2017.
Aside from adding a touch of class and sophistication to your bathroom, an HTR is also a good hygiene solution as it keeps towels dry, reducing the chance of bacterial growth caused from musty, damp towels.
The energy conscious among us will wonder about electricity consumption, but advances have been made to address this. An HTR is heated by electricity or, these days, water from the geyser, and Jeeves, for one, has an eco-friendly HTR powered by solar-generated hot water together with a wholly solar-powered circulation pump, resulting in zero running costs.
Also, HTRs these days boast technology that makes the rail hotter where a towel has been placed on it, also reducing energy costs.
Underfloor heating is another way to warm up your bathroom, giving you the pleasure of stepping on to a lovely warm floor after a bath or shower. Aside from being discreet and effective, underfloor heating is also a healthier heating option in that it doesn’t emit dry air, which aggravates symptoms such as asthma.
You can even install it under bathroom tiles yourself in a couple of hours. CTM sells underfloor heating kits for upwards of R1 500.
For an added layer of cosiness, you can lay down a rug or mat. Coir mats are ideal as coir is a natural material that can withstand water so it doesn’t easily mark or stain.
If you’re renovating or creating a new bathroom, rather than clinical white, consider using rustic elements in the decor – interesting patterns, natural-looking materials and rich contrasting textures.
Starting with tiles, look in retailers like Italtile, CTM, Tiletoria, Italcotto or Bathroom Bizarre for an amazing range of nature-inspired textures and colours, including faux wood or stone-like tiles, that boast all the benefits of tiles – durability and waterproofed walls and flooring – while imbuing your bathroom with the cosy subtlety of nature.
“Warm colour palettes are an ever-popular trend, reflected in a wide range of wall and floor tiles,” says Jasmin Kraneveldt from Bathroom Bizarre.
The beauty about wood porcelain tiles is that you have no maintenance and they are perfect for walls and floors. You don’t need to seal these tiles or worry about the moisture in your bathroom as with real wood. A perfect addition to bring nature into your space.
If you like the look of stone, seek out the Rock Siberia glazed ceramic tiles at Bathroom Bizarre, which have the appearance of natural stone cladding.
If you’ve got a spacious bathroom and want to go the extra mile, you can’t beat the softness of curtains. However, it’s important to select fabrics and wallpapers that are resistant to steam and damp.
Another way to cosy-up a bathroom is to create an accent colour wall behind the bath or basin, complimenting the space with coloured mats, covers and towels. Blues, turquoise and greens are cosy colours, and reds and pinks give off more energy, according to Hansgrohe Africa, while accentuation is better than full colour in a bathroom.
Then take a different view of lighting in your bathroom. You don’t need to stick to the characterless, flush-mounted “boob” light. A small hanging chandelier or pendant light warm up a bathroom beautifully, while creating a point of interest, as long as the ceiling is high enough.
Lastly, a wonderful way to warm your bathroom is to personalise it, with objets d’art.