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A Bento-Box Bath

A cast-in-place concrete soaking tub is the centerpiece of this Japanese-inspired bath

If the Willinghams' diner-style kitchen is designed for serious hanging out, then their master bathroom is designed for serious meditation. The Japanese-design influence alluded to in the kitchen is more fully expressed in the couple's master bedroom and bath, which features a cast-in-place concrete soaking tub, a separate toilet room, bamboo cabinetry, and pocket doors with shoji panels. Since much of the home's remodel focused on creating casual spaces where the family could gather, the master bath, serene and exceedingly private, is a notable departure from those public spaces.

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The design of the master bathroom is centered on a Japanese soaking tub, the first thing you see when you walk into the room. Because the tub is on the second floor, the floor system was designed using double 2x12s at 12 in. on center to ensure it could handle the weight of the tub filled with water.
The frameless shower enclosure is roughly 5 ft. by 7 ft. and features a Thermasol steam-generation system. Natural light pours in through the maintenance-free, obscured glass of the vinyl Kolbe and Kolbe window.
Twin wall-hung lavatories by Hastings free up floor space and make cleaning a breeze. The faucets and valves are from Grohe.
The surface finishes are painted drywall and tile. The glass wall tiles are accented with a Japanese line, a term I learned from my client, of natural-stone strips.
A glass door leads to the toilet room, which features a wall-hung Duravit toilet. The toilet is hung on a carrier concealed in the wall along with the tank. A simple push button operates the powerful flush mechanism. Like all the cabinetry in the bathroom, the linen cabinet is made of solid-core bamboo plywood.   
To see how these homeowners incorporated Japanese design elements into their diner-style kitchen, read The Blue-Plate Special from Fine Homebuilding's Annual Kitchens & Baths Issue, #191 (Fall/Winter 2007), pp.64-67.
Photos by: Brian Pontolilo
From Fine Homebuilding191 (Kitchens & Baths)