A classic bathroom with modern flair

Defined by a simple colour scheme, this compact bathroom is filled with clever storage ideas and luxe finishes
Michael Tobar


A wealth of spaciousness and light belies the diminutive size and long, narrow shape of this bathroom, situated on the first floor of a inner-city terrace in Sydney. But it wasn’t always this way. The original room was the victim of an unsympathetic renovation by previous owners that accentuated its narrow proportions, with a clunky spa bath taking up space at the back, poky glass blocks in the window and a rim of dated tiles that served only to enclose the room.


The offending tiles were ripped out, along with everything else, to make way for a complete overhaul. Designer Darren Genner of Minosa was chosen to create a sophisticated urban retreat. Keeping the basic layout the same saved on plumbing costs and made the construction phase of the renovation fairly simple.


before renovation bathroom
Before (Credit: Michael Tobar )

A softer, modern take on traditional monochrome was chosen for the colour scheme. The dark chocolate tones of timber-effect tiles have been teamed with white for a balanced look that makes
an immediate impression as you walk into the room. “Working with narrow spaces is always a challenge, so we chose to wrap the floor tiles up one wall to make the space feel taller,” says designer Darren.


One of the most effective design decisions was doing away with a bath altogether. Instead the owners chose a wet room shielded by a sheet of frameless glass. The back wall is completely free of fixtures and tiled in pure white to create an open feel. The finished room is minimalist yet relaxed, and just goes to show that you don’t need a huge area to make big improvements.

wood bathroom modern
(Credit: Michael Tobar )

Playing with different heights can make the most of a small space, drawing the eye to varying points in a room. The floating Minosa basin and display shelf are positioned asymmetrically up the wall for a striking feature. An extra surface space is created for storing items such as guest towels and soaps. Floating fixtures increase the sense of space in the room by exposing the floor underneath. While the old sink appeared to jut out into the room, the new streamlined basin has become a sleek internal fixture.


The owner’s favourite feature is the timber-effect porcelain tiles, from Earp Bros, that line the feature wall and floor. The tiles’ grained effect imbues the room with warmth and character.

bathroom modern
(Credit: Michael Tobar )

The bathroom’s streamlined style cleverly disguises its storage space. Everyday essentials are kept within easy reach, yet out of view, in the floating drawer unit and recessed mirrored cabinet. The cabinet lights up thanks to a row of LEDs installed underneath. 

(Credit: Michael Tobar )

The Parisi toilet is tucked away behind the bathroom door, so it’s not the first thing you see when you walk into the room. In keeping with the sleek lines of the rest of the bathroom, the unit has a slim cistern that doesn’t take up much space.

(Credit: Michael Tobar )

Bulky items, such as cleaning products and bath towels, are all stored out of sight in the floating drawer unit from Minosa. Made of polyurethane in a gloss finish, it is a stunning counterpoint to the textured matt finish of the floor and wall tiles.

(Credit: Michael Tobar )

The owners avoided cluttering the space by choosing Australian-made wall-mounted tapware from the ‘Classic’ range for Minosa. It contributes to the room’s minimalist look, and when it’s placed on the wall, it frees up extra vanity space.

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