Unique Ideas for Modern Luxury Bathrooms and Spa

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In the years following the pandemic, people are seeking luxury accessible in their everyday lives, most prominently in their homes. “Quiet luxury” is having its moment in fashion – and homes are getting influenced by it as well. Blame Succession, blame the recession, but this style has been held true by wealthy families for decades. Even seemingly utilitarian rooms such as bathrooms are getting the luxury treatment, with “luxury bathroom” searches on Google increasing 64% from 2019 to 2023.

But what does “quiet luxury” look like when it comes to bathrooms? It’s not about ostentatious luxury, but about picking luxurious features that grant you comfort and stand the test of time. In this case, spa features, excellent lighting, and natural accents. Here are some unique ideas for your modern luxury bathroom or home spa. 

A home sauna for the ultimate relaxation

Home sauna

There are few things more luxurious than an at-home sauna. One of the hottest features in luxury bathroom design, a sauna can be the element that sells a home all by itself. Because it’s unique, and it’s one of those things that not everybody has. It’s very much a dream feature, which is why it feels so special. 

Having a sauna in your home is a great option for anyone, not just because it’s incredibly relaxing, but also because it helps stave off stress and reduce your risk of cardiovascular events by more than 50%, which is great for the whole family. Not to mention the convenience of being able to catch a post-workout steam right in your home. 

The best part is that it doesn’t require a lot of set-up or for you to completely turn your bathroom upside down. All you need is some wood paneling and the sauna space doesn’t have to be huge; only large enough to fit one or two people, depending on how you use it. It can be your special private space where you feel like you’re visiting a luxury spa

Of course, if you have the space and the desire, you can very well dedicate an entire room to your home sauna. Perhaps the small closet in your en-suite, or one of the smaller guest bedrooms. 

Steam showers

Are you longing for a steam, but you don’t have the space or the desire to install a full-on sauna? A steam shower may be your perfect solution. Providing a luxurious experience right in your own home, a steam shower is a relatively quick and painless installation. 

A steam shower is a great tool for a healthy lifestyle. Easy access to steam helps improve circulation, helps with arthritis and stiff joints, and has the added bonus of giving you truly great looking skin. That expensive-looking skin you get at the spa? You can get it at home. What greater luxury than that? 

It’s a great addition that isn’t cumbersome or bulky, and doesn’t require a full bathroom remodel, if that’s not what you desire. You can install it in your existing shower, or you can also buy a steam-ready unit that takes care of all the potential issues that may arise with installing the steam in your existing shower. 

In fact, it should be sitting at the top of your list of bathroom spa ideas, what is more relaxing than getting a steam?

Cold plunge

Cold plunge bathtub

The cold plunge is one of the less common residential bathroom features, which is precisely why it makes a great addition to a space that is meant to be luxurious. Especially if you have a huge bathroom or a backyard space that can house a special cold plunge bathtub, it would be a shame not to consider this among your at-home spa ideas. 

Cold plunges are known to be excellent treatment for inflammation and swelling. Far from being a whim, they can act as medical devices, helping the body soothe aches and pains and making sure it all functions flawlessly. According to Dr. Craig Van Dien (Hackensack Meridian Health’s JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute’s physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist) muscle soreness can be relieved via cold plunges at 50 to 59 F, for example. 

Since a cold plunge is a special procedure, it requires some special equipment. You can certainly spend just under $1000 on a special tub that can withstand the low temperatures necessary for cold plunges, but these special tubs go up to around $5000. 

No matter how much you spend on this feature, the investment will go a long way in establishing the kind of mood you want and the environment in which you can have a luxury spa experience. 

Bring indoor/outdoor design into your bathroom

Indoor/outdoor design has been a huge trend in interiors ever since the pandemic. The indoor isolation gave way to a wish to be outdoors, to commune with nature, and bring more of that inspiration indoors. That created a trend for outdoor kitchens, as well as living rooms bathed in natural light with huge glass doors to create a sense of the outdoors. 

It also brought a lot of nature-inspired design and elements at the forefront, not just for living rooms, but also for private spaces like the bathroom. There is a certain luxury to a nature-inspired bathroom that mentally takes you to a secluded luxury resort with an outdoor shower and surrounded by lush nature. 

Large windows that let the natural light filter in are your very first step – any space looks ten times better if it benefits with natural light. It can be tricky in the bathroom, since privacy is paramount, but there are glass treatments and filters that can be applied to retain privacy, but still allow the light to shine through. Natural-inspired tiles – in natural, neutral colors, imitating rock or other elements can also help create the oasis effect you want. 

Finishing touches such as decorating with sand, pebbles, and rocks are a great way to bring the outside in on a budget. And don’t forget the most important part – plants. A lot of plants thrive in a bathroom environment precisely because it’s so moist and humid, and with the added natural light, there is no stopping them from growing lush and beautiful. 

Put yourself into the most flattering light

People usually prioritize lighting in other spaces in their home, but bathroom lighting should not be overlooked when you’re looking for master bathroom ideas. In many ways, this is where you’re at your most vulnerable, so you should look and feel your best. Not only that, but good light is sometimes a matter of practicality in a bathroom – you need it when getting ready or when doing treatments and other pampering. 

A spa experience often feels luxurious because of the way it looks and the way it makes you look – and half that battle is great lighting. During the daytime, nothing beats natural light, but what about nighttime, winters, and overcast days? That’s when you need lighting that is as flattering as it is beautiful. 

Small discrete spotlights hidden in ceiling alcoves are always an option – if you want to create the illusion that you’re just glowing from within, no external light source needed! – but interesting lighting set-ups and fixtures can not just create great lighting, but also add to the design of this space and make it feel even more luxurious. A chandelier can be a decadent focal point of the space, but even that can be minimalist, if you so wish. 

Final thoughts

Perhaps when considering a home renovation, your bathroom is not your priority, but according to statistics, there is a real preoccupation with bathrooms among homeowners lately. A bathroom doesn’t have to just be a utilitarian space that you only use when necessary. Allow yourself the luxury of a spa bathroom, and you can turn this room into your favorite space in your entire home.

Not only are people more interested in designing luxury bathrooms, but they’re willing to put their money where their mouth is. Statistics show that homeowners’ bathroom renovation budget has increased 13% to 17%, with high-end projects reaching over $35,000. Luxury bathrooms are undoubtedly on people’s minds, so why not take the plunge and upgrade yours?