In the LEED Platinum-certified Ellis Residence, architect Matthew Coates says, he set out to prove “you don’t have to sacrifice high design if you go green.” True to that aim, the house’s master bath puts sustainable materials and energy efficiency at the service of a serenely contemplative experience. The cast-in-place concrete shower and soaking tub occupy opposite ends of the tubelike space, offering yin-yang views of a private garden and the Seattle skyline, respectively. Fir plywood paneling and fir millwork supply visual warmth, while a hydronic system in the concrete floor, shower pan, and tub provide the literal variety. Our jury noted the appealing contrast between garden and city views, calling the room “a tour de force of inside/outside.” Said one judge, “it feels so private ... but still has a connection to the outdoors.”

Entrant/Architect: Coates Design Architects, Bainbridge Island, Wash.; Builder: Smallwood Design and Construction, Bainbridge Island; Living space: 275 square feet (bath only); Construction cost: Withheld; Photographer: Lara Swimmer.

Resources: Countertops: Caesarstone,, Fuez,;Fittings: Delta,, Grohe,, Toto USA,;Fixtures: Caroma,, Kohler,, St. Thomas Creations,;Lighting fixtures: Access Lighting,, Bega,, Bocci,, Halo,, Juno,;Paints/stains/wall finishes: Sherwin-Williams,;Windows: Loewen,