But it’s definitely and eccentrically ultra-modern. Conventional tubs are great, but my wish list has a distinct point of view: special features that, along with great design, really make tubs chic. Every tub on the list is Italian-designed.
It started with this image clipped from a German magazine. I fell hard for the tub-in-the-round luxury and easy to clean floor mounted filler post of the ilbagnoalessi-one freestanding acrylic whirlpool tub. Bathroom TVs aren’t a new idea but what genius to locate a small screen so that taking a long post-workout soak can be entertaining vs when-do-i-get-out boring.
Perhaps even more spectacular are two tubs from Agape, an Italian bathroom fixture purveyor that’s a darling of high-end architects for a willingness to customize and the use of interesting materials. The rectangular Cartesio comes with storage shelves in one panel. Made of cristalplant, a nonporous, recyclable and restorable solid surface (I like to learn something new while I drool), it stands free or fits in corners or niches. Faucets can be mounted on the tub deck, the wall or floor.
Bathing in Agape’s enamel and stainless steel ufo must be like slipping into a mixing bowl made for Gulliver. An enamel shelf provides a lounging surface on one side. The tub exterior has a black enamel coating but another version features polished stainless steel outside – durable enough to survive a tornado, no doubt.
Think “roman baths” and the allure of this tub – with it glamorous Hollywood pool lighting – is clear. The Kos geo 180, which looks like a large pudding basin when it’s freestanding, also can be sunken. Filled, it weighs nearly 1000 pounds. Getting in requires a maneuver: sit down, swing legs over the side and slide in. Getting out? Let’s see. At 70 cm or 27.5 inches deep, that’s a two-foot span with no internal step. In Roman times, of course, there were servants to work out such pesky details.