September 23, 2013
Hailing from São Paulo, Brazil, a family looked to DEN Architecture to reflect the Miami Beach view in their master bath. “The design aesthetic was really a modern take on our client’s design preferences,” said designer Germán Brun. “This is a young family that really appreciates modern design and a colorful lifestyle.”
The previous developer-driven standard bath fell short of the client’s colorful taste. “It was enclosed on all sides and located in the middle of the apartment, with no natural light,” commented Brun. All of the existing walls were removed for an open layout that takes advantage of the ocean view. The design brief was for a modern, spa-like, minimalist master bathroom that allowed for easy circulation within the suite, “creating a seamless transition between spaces,” added Brun.
For this transition, the only obstacle between the master bathroom and the floor-to-ceiling windows of the bedroom is a frameless glass door. White custom cabinets complement the weathered woods in the rest of the apartment, including the kitchen’s maple butcher block in the kitchen and the dining room’s rustic, white oak picnic table. Reminiscent of the beach sand, light taupe plank porcelain floors flow out of the bathroom into the bedroom.
“We drew our inspiration for this particular project from the beach below,” said Brun. “Only a few steps away from the building are the turquoise waters, the white sand and the white yachts that sail by.”
The cantilevering double sink, rectangular dual-flush toilet, quartz-clad soaking tub and wide shower niche recall these yachts. “We used the concept of weightlessness throughout to contribute to the spatial perception of a larger space,” said Brun. “We did everything possible to have as many things floating as possible.” The low-flow faucets are wall mounted, and the showerhead is connected through the ceiling.
Inspired by Miami’s lifeguard stands, the overall white suite is accented by turquoise and aqua-colored walls. The mosaic in the wet areas mimics the ocean water with a turquoise color and its composition, which includes white Florida sand.
“An informal and colorful beach vibe was what we were after, which contrasts nicely to the minimalist lines of the design,” explained Brun. This tile has a crackled finish to enhance the water reference.
Adding to the oceanic feel, an irregular format porcelain tile clads the backsplash wall. “We were looking for a material that gave us a subtle three-dimensional geometric texture as an abstraction of the patterns on a wind-swept beach dune,” said Brun. “There is always the issue of overdoing it with color, so we were very careful where and what colors were integrated into the design.” The sandy color balances the abundance of turquoise tile.
“Given our location in Miami, and our love of the tropics, it is very difficult for us not to create colorful, minimalist interiors,” explained Brun. “If we were working on an apartment in New York City, my guess is that color would be far less important than it is here in Miami.”