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Thoughts on shared shower and tub "wet areas" ?
Darren Hart
January 1, 2013 in Design Dilemma
OK houzzers, here is my attempt at getting everything we want in the existing 6x11 footprint of the master bath. I'm considering the combined shower and tub wet area. The glass is optional - only if needed to contain the splashing from the shower.

Does anyone have experience with spaces like this? They look great in the photos, but sometimes reality doesn't match quite so well.

Our top priorities:
1) Nice bathtub for her (she didn't have one in the last house and this one SHALL have a nice bathtub in the master bathroom)
2) Adequate shower for me (32x48 minimum)
3) 5' minimum vanity with 1 sink (counter space is more contended than the sink for us)
4) Adequate storage (vanity plus over-toilet cabinet worked well at Spring Ct)

For example:
Dyna Bathrooms
Hymettus Project
 
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Darren Hart
And here is the wet area with an arched ceiling and a combined bench/tub-deck instead of the small step which I realized later wasn't really tall enough to serve as a sitting bench anyway.
January 1, 2013 at 6:59PM   
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TanCalGal
We always like 2 sinks. Think of resale value if nothing else.
After we shower, we like to wipe tile dry with a microfiber cloth. I wouldn't like wiping this large shower + tub area after every shower. We *do* have to wipe tub area in a beach cottage, b/c it's an older, small tub-shower combo. I would avoid the shower-tub combination in a new large bathroom.
January 1, 2013 at 7:04PM     
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Darren Hart
With a 5' foot tub we have about 5'6" for the vanity, which would be pretty tight for two sinks. You're right about resale of course, but if we have to choose between a sink or bumping out a wall, the sink will lose :-)

We try to squeegee the glass, but have relied on the sealer for the stone in our previous bath. That being said, I'm pushing for porcelain instead of stone in this bath, perhaps I should consider wiping it down. You're right, I wouldn't want to wipe down the entire space every morning!

Thanks for the thoughts!
January 1, 2013 at 7:44PM   
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sunnyteresa
We prefer 1sink with more countertop. We chose to keep the sink on one side instead of centered.
January 1, 2013 at 8:19PM     
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Darren Hart
Sunnyteresa, that was the same logic we applied to our previous bathroom and we were very happy with it.
January 1, 2013 at 9:23PM   
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Darren Hart
We do have an alternative space which we could use for a bathroom. The master closet is obscenely large at 11x13 (and the existing bathroom is ideal closet size for us at 7x11). It would be more costly to run all the plumbing and electrical as well as finish such a large space. But it could be made into something like the following. While it has a lot of incremental improvements over the original smaller space (tub and shower are separate and each is larger, more toilet privacy, double sinks, storage, and nicer windows over the tub overlooking a nicer part of the yard), it doesn't seem to be a particularly good use of nearly 150 square feet for space. The "closet" currently serves as a closet and a sewing room.
January 1, 2013 at 9:41PM     
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
I do almost excursively wet room baths. I've run into one fiberglass floor system that is structural thus giving drainage and built in slope by replacing the plywood floor deck.that may be a solution. Most of my projects are new construction and I'll do sloped joist or tapered slabs)
Most often I do waistcoat high glass or porcelain tile and self draining plaster for walls
( http://www.ecostucco.com/ ) and ceilings.(over waterproof dense glass backing board) This allows for cement coated crown and chair rail to integrated into the room. With a humidity switched exhaust fan or fans this keeps the space from mildewing, as does a sprites of chlorine bleach and water.

My next one has a new Kolher deep soaking bubble tub, in your drawing I'd put it in the back corner of the shower and the shower where the tub is. Tub is 48 x 48 by 32 deep. ( http://shop.ferguson.com/product/Kohler-K1969VB-White-734083?CID=13758_NP_NP_111312&sp_rid=MTE2MjEzMTQwMAS2&Ns=AvailabilitySort|0||Primary_Finish|1||Sort_Order|1&term=vibracoustic&Ntt=vibracoustic&search_button.y=17&sp_mid=5082775&search_button.x=35 ) In your space the only glass would be next to the vanity. About 32" wide should be adequate. More often if a soaker only tub is used, I'll go with a free standing tub from Jetta with only a drain and no overflow. The drain drops the draining water on the sloped floor and the water supply is via wall mounted values and a ceiling drop supply. ( [houzz=
] )

Other considerations: Use a 2'8" pocket door for egress (move the door 6" closer to the toilet), add a duplex behind the toilet for future bidet toilet seat, thin the hall closet to 16" deep and add the space to the counter, check out the back lite mirror system I've described on one of the strings here on Houzz.
January 1, 2013 at 10:15PM   
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Darren Hart
Wow, great comments, thanks! Great tips on materials. The ideas on the square tub are interesting... I'd need another water heater though!

The door is 2'8" as drawn, if I move it closer to the toilet I encroach on that magic 60" number. Maybe that would be OK.

Narrowing the closet isn't a bad idea. I consumed a linen closet in my last remodel, and while I didn't regret it... I'd like to avoid it if possible this time. That might just allow for the double sinks others have suggested. Although I'm not quite convinced, I think we'd still prefer the counter space.
January 1, 2013 at 10:28PM   
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PRO
Deborah Butler, Brickwood Builders
If you do not steal the closet area, then I think the single sink is the best solution in a small space. Two crowded sinks might look okay on paper, but don't function well. Even with a 6' vanity that is up against one side wall, I can't stand at the center of the sink - I have to stand over toward the center of the vanity in order to do my hair and not hit the wall with elbows. This encroaches on the other person's space. I would stay with the one sink unless you can enlarge the space.

I like the concept of the wet room, but do not have any personal experience with it.
January 2, 2013 at 4:09AM     
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
The pocket door will allow handicap access where a swing will not.
I also would consider using a stylish kitchen sink faucet located middle of the sinks side. This would have a spray type spout for washing hair, but is also more accessible.

The depth of the tub is the key for square or round tubs. The wet room design allows filling edge to overflow instead of to over flow drain. [houzz=Infinity Tub] In a non wet room bath here is an example of a spill over tub with ceiling supply. [houzz=Sproule-Rowen]
January 2, 2013 at 7:31AM   
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Darren Hart
Deborah, thanks for the thoughts on the vanity and sinks. The practical experience regarding elbows and width is helpful.

Custom Home Planning Center, sorry I meant to confirm in my last post, I was planning on a pocket door for the same reasons. The spill over tubs are interesting, will have to play with this a bit more and run that by the "stakeholder" ;-)

It does seem like the freestanding tubs would be less convenient to use and clean around. The tub deck allows you to place pillows and bath products and cleaning around the freestanding tubs in the corners looks difficult. How about maintenance of the wood (teak?) flooring?
January 2, 2013 at 8:19AM   
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
Since the free standing tub is not connected to any plumbing just push it over on to the shower side to clean or retrieve dropped items..
Some people object to a slight slope in the floor and add the teak. It holds up fine and again since there is no attachment to the floor can be taken out and sanded if the finish grays or you need to clean underneath.
January 2, 2013 at 4:08PM     
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PRO
Wow Great Place
I vote for the swap, moving the bathroom to the current closet space, as that layout is fantastic, and much more practical.
And I must ask...."custom home planning" do you not have freestanding tubs plumbed in in wet rooms??? The tub just drains out onto the shower floor?? I have never heard of this, nor would I think to suggest it, so I am curious if others have also done this....I wouldn't want to be sliding a large bathtub around to clean around it, that just seems.....odd. I can see overspill draining into the shower drain, but not the main tub....
January 2, 2013 at 4:17PM     
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Darren Hart
"Wow Great Place", Thanks for the comments. I feel some strange attraction to the smaller bath, maybe just some badge of creativity for getting what we want out of the smaller space. Anybody can make a bathroom out of an 11x13 room :-)

That said, I'm not thrilled with the entrance to the larger bathroom. Something about the cabinets on the left and the corner of the toilet stall seem like they would feel intrusive. I have considered trying to get a smaller walk-in closet (just for my wife) incorporated into the bathroom by making the shower and tub inline with eachother rather at a right angle (the wall is 11' long) and moving the door closer to the shower and replacing the cabinets to the left of the door with a deeper walk-in closet of about 6'x6'.I haven't put anywhere near the same amount of thought into this version of the bathroom, the drawing above was just the result of about 45 minutes of tinkering.

Hrm... will have to reset my thinking and give this version some more thought. The added cost will likely be in the extra space to finish rather than the electrical or plumbing as I'll be moving all the fixtures in the smaller version anyway.
January 2, 2013 at 5:03PM   
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
It only requires an up size of the drain pipe to 2 1/2" to meet code, But more often than not you do the shower and after occupancy you in just bring the tub in and set it down. The ceiling supply give you some flexibility on placement. The tubs I've used are acrylic and don't weight much empty. With a sloped floor the water flows down hill so why not. I order the tubs without overflows just a bottom plug.
January 2, 2013 at 5:07PM     
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Custom Home Planning Center
January 2, 2013 at 5:10PM     
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Wow Great Place
Spend some time on the plan, I really like the idea of the massive bathroom, since the existing bathroom still gives a decent size walk-in. Not sure why you'd need so much cabinetry on the left as you enter the "new" bathroom, nor a full cabinet in front of you while seated on the throne, but hey, it was a fast first draft, after all!
My preference for the larger version is also in the practicality of a wet room if you can avoid it....it is a great idea when space is tight, but I hear so many complaints about shower maintenance for glass surrounds, I can only imagine the frustration of getting the tub soaked every time you shower! I've yet to a design a wet room (though will do so in the Spring for an upcoming renovation), so my worry may be unfounded....
January 2, 2013 at 5:11PM     
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Wow Great Place
Well, CHPC, I will have to keep that in mind! I'm still skeptical, but hey, who knows, this may be just what I need somewhere down the line, and I'll have you to thank....though I will double check local codes first... Thanks for the tip!
January 2, 2013 at 5:14PM   
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feeny
I prefer inset deck tubs to free standing, and that is based on having experience with both styles in our house. Free standing tubs look great and are very popular at the moment, but decks are more convenient for all the reasons you already listed (mostly involving the ease of perching things on the edges).
January 2, 2013 at 5:21PM     
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
here is the layout for my 2013 Parade of homes master bath with a 8 x 7 tub shower wet room. The house is only 2350 sq feet exclusive of the 3 car garage and the 1 bedroom quest apartment.
January 2, 2013 at 7:01PM   
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Darren Hart
CHPC... maybe the site clips the image... I don't see the wet room.

EDIT: Apologies, found it. That floorplan can be difficult to read for the lay-person with all the detail. I have to say, the amount of redundancy in that bathroom suggests an entirely different mindset from what we are looking for.
January 2, 2013 at 7:30PM   
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
The dark to light area showing the 9'2" measurement is the wet room
January 2, 2013 at 7:49PM   
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
close up
January 2, 2013 at 9:38PM   
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sjkingston
We had a similar combination shower and tub room in Japan when we lived there and loved it. You rinsed off in the shower before getting into the soaking tub and if you overfilled, the overflow ran into the shower floor drain. Very practical use of space. Would remodel that way in a heartbeat.
January 3, 2013 at 10:41PM     
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Custom Home Planning Center
I'm a believer - new systems like: http://designwithoutbarriers.com/products/wet-room-solutions/mullen-shower-base are being developed that allow you to replace the plywood deck on your floor joist with a pre manufactured tapered deck for barrier free design.
January 4, 2013 at 1:20PM     
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Darren Hart
OK, just following up with version 2.0 of the bathroom in the current 11'x13' closet area. I still really like the idea of the wet room in the smaller space, I fear it may just not be large enough at 7' x5'2". I've included dimensions on these versions for reference. We feel like the open area in the larger bath will make the space feel too large (we're used to smaller bathrooms and honestly feel "exposed" when using much larger baths). Anyway, thoughts, critique, and encouragement welcome! Thanks Houzzers.

EDIT: Imagine a large window above the bathtub.
January 4, 2013 at 1:52PM   
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PRO
Interiors International, Inc.
I love the one of the gray one you posted. You have some great floor plans to choose from.
January 4, 2013 at 2:01PM   
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Darren Hart
Erm... the gray one? Do you mean the one with two separate vanities in my most recent comment?
January 4, 2013 at 2:05PM   
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PRO
Custom Home Planning Center
The one on the left works, but you don't need any glass if this is a wet room. Further a bi pocket door should be used for the entrance. But if your getting rid of the hall closet you could put a vanity and sink on the tub wall and the other on the hall wall. Offset the sinks so you are but to but. In that case I might go back to a right hand door to shield the toilet during intrusions.
January 4, 2013 at 2:15PM   
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Darren Hart
CHPC, good point on the pocket doors, that would improve the space by the vanities. I wasn't thinking of a wet room for the larger bathroom (the one on the left), but I suppose we could. As for the hall closet, we'd prefer not to lose it entirely as it provides valuable storage.
January 4, 2013 at 2:21PM   
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PRO
Interiors International, Inc.
@Darren Hart The middle pic you posted with the L shaped laid on its side entry into the wet area. Nice wood vanity also.
January 4, 2013 at 2:29PM     
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Renovating Soon
Darren are you still out there? I'd love an update as to what you chose and how you feel about it. We are thinking of doing something very similar...
October 9, 2013 at 6:33PM      Thanked by Darren Hart
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dclostboy
I really like the first plan. Very similar to what I had to do yo fit tub and decent sized shower in my beach house. I'll be there over the weekend and take a pice for you. It makes the space feel much more open than separate shower.
October 9, 2013 at 6:43PM      Thanked by Darren Hart
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Darren Hart
@Tamica Yes still here, and still deliberating, believe it or not! We've consulted with an architect and she had a third idea which makes much more efficient use of space which we like. The idea would be to keep the bathroom where it is and bump out the outer wall three feet to allow for a tub. I should model it and post the idea visually. I'll do so when I get some more time to play with SketchUp. Thanks for the interest!
October 9, 2013 at 10:44PM     
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Renovating Soon
My considerations were less about the keeping the place clean and more about making sure the shower area would get/stay warm enough while showering. I also can't figure a way to make it handicap accessble since we plan on aging in place. What is your third idea, Darren?
October 12, 2013 at 7:40PM   
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sstarr
These are some of the best tub-in-shower concepts I've seen... and are pretty compelling. I've drawn a few of them, and they are rarely popular.
I think the main problem is that people want more from the bath experience than they do from a shower... and so if it's stuck inside the shower, that's disappointing.
October 12, 2013 at 7:49PM     
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dclostboy
Here's how I compromised to get what I needed from awkward bath layout. Forgive the glare from bedroom window.
October 13, 2013 at 7:08AM     
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dclostboy
Had to work around the beams and ductwork in the floor. Love the sapphire glass.
October 13, 2013 at 7:13AM     
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Darren Hart
OK, since people have asked, here is my third option. Only in 2D as I just don't have the time to pull it into 3D at the moment. The black lines represent the existing structure. The red lines represent the new concept. Note that this concept calls for a 3x6 bump out at the top of the bathroom to allow for a bathtub. The shower is bumped into the existing bedroom area, followed by a pair of closets leading to the new master bedroom which occupies some of the existing bedroom and all of the existing master closet. This option provides for some added privacy from the kids bedrooms directly across the hall.... which would be nice at 6am when the little one turns her lights on and slams the doors open to welcome the new day :-) I'm not sold on any of these options yet, each has some pros and cons. One thing they have in common is trying to increase the size of the bathroom (adding a tub) and reduce the space dedicated to the closet.
October 14, 2013 at 9:46PM   
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