With its open layout and glass partitions, this master bath makes the most of daylight borrowed from a distant bedroom window.

With its open layout and glass partitions, this master bath makes the most of daylight borrowed from a distant bedroom window.

Credit: Doug Edmunds

In contrast to its kitchen, Blur Loft’s master bath occupies a position far from the window wall. Architects Brian Johnsen and Sebastian Schmaling answered that familiar apartment-design challenge with a scheme that both ameliorates and celebrates the room’s landlocked location. Rather than a door of any kind, a long hallway provides privacy from the master bedroom while channeling daylight from that room’s ceiling-height window. But the bathroom also embraces the metaphor of a cave, with primary surfaces clad in a stonelike tile that gives the space the appearance of having been hewn from solid rock.

The bathroom centers on two visually striking elements: a tiled tub surround that rises from the floor like a slab of sedimentary rock and an open bamboo frame—suspended between the tub deck and the ceiling—that comprises the vanity counter. Open spaces flank the mirrors mounted within the frame, allowing a view to the tub area. A floor-to-ceiling glass shower wall is the only additional partitioning device. “It’s not compartmentalized,” Johnsen explains. “We were trying to break down the elements that would inhibit light penetrating.” While the room’s geological character conveys a sense of quiet and solidity, he notes, “It’s a nice open, inviting space, given its geographic location within the unit.”

Project: Blur Loft, Milwaukee; Builder: KBS Construction, Milwaukee; Architect: Johnsen Schmaling Architects, Milwaukee; Photographer: Doug Edmunds. / Resources: Ceramic tile: Caesar; Paints: Benjamin Moore; Plumbing fittings: GROHE, Kohler; Plumbing fixtures: Bain Ultra, Duravit, TOTO USA.

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