Trend research: Home – Homedulgence, sensory gratification
Kitchen and Bathroom

From a design standpoint, the new centrality of the kitchen and the living space – becoming increasingly merged – makes for innovative interior design solutions and the creation of areas that defy conventional definitions.

When entering the Stone family residence in Taiwan, designed by Hao Design, one is not received into a “normal” living room, but into a space that could be described as a “playground”. The owners’ prime concern was for a home that would encourage the recreational and study activities of their two daughters, in a laid back and natural manner, and also allow the parents to spend as much time as possible with them in their jealously-guarded free time. 


This desire slowly generated a flexible and interactive area with a large wooden table in the middle, hub of the main domestic activities, and a slide, also made of wood, mostly intended to amuse the younger daughter. The slide leads from a staircase, which also serves as a bookcase, to a play area covered with a soft cushion in the space below. Favourite Thing lamps hang above the big table, and they too serve a dual purpose: both light sources and small display cases for objects made by the two little girls.
A wall to the right of the entrance has been designed for use as a blackboard, both for noting down recipes and for giving the girls a free zone for drawing.


The kitchen thus contains everything anyone could possibly want for a serene family life, being the prime place in which the various family members come together and talk about things in a space where they can freely express their own points of view.

Moscow and Copenhagen are cities that might appear geographically distant, but they are closer than one could possibly imagine, given the interior designs for these two homes.

In the Russian capital, designers at Crosby Studios have renovated an early 20th century flat that mostly extends lengthways. Here too, the hub of the living area is a fluid space that seamlessly houses the kitchen, the living area and the relaxation area. A black hammock is boldly hung next to the TV, standing out against the white background and insinuating itself gently into the dining area, in which wall units and fridge blend cleverly into the white walls.


Underscoring this sense of “continuity” and openness, the partitions separating the main space from the more “private” bathroom, office and sleeping areas have been replaced by transparent surfaces, while a seamless white floor acts as a trait d’union between all the different parts of the house.

The bathroom has long been the place devoted to wellness and the regeneration of mind and body


The modular project conceived by designer Jean-François D'Or with the declared intention to create “a bathroom that does not look like a bathroom”, not just a place in which to carry out daily cleansing rituals, but a truly comfortable place in which to start and end the day, reflects the current trend.

It is characterised by components that combine straight and curved lines, gridded surfaces and a variety of “unconventional” colours and finishes to balanced effect; these include sinks, taps, cupboards, mirrors, lighting, electric sockets and a range of accessories such as hooks and hangers, designed to be used and customised creatively so as to fit in with personal wellness routines.

A series of practical solutions have been conceived, cleverly integrated into each of the components and the entire room is lit by spherical lights “moulded” into the furniture, which can be dimmed to create an intimate atmosphere for tranquil moments or turned full on for more everyday purposes. 


Even the confines of the bathroom-space are gradually merging with the rest of the home. The creative Lamp Shower – designed by the prolific Nendo practice – is symbolic of the current cross-contamination. It is a hybrid born of the aim “to combine what is most archetypal about the living space, the lighting, with water” the Japanese designer Oki Sato explains – which brings a whole new dimension to the bathroom environment while perfectly carrying out its original duty as a shower.

The shower-light can be wall-mounted or ceiling-hung and introduces a living room object effortlessly into the bathroom space, making it even more welcoming, enveloping the entire body and conferring a magnified sensual dimension to the shower experience, marrying the transparency of the water with the luminosity and iridescence of the light. As Oki Sato says: “They are the rays of sunshine, light that brings the beauty of the water to the fore, freeing its powerful aesthetic effect.”

The marriage of the two elements is achieved by sophisticated technology that enables water and electricity to travel through the same channel but in two separate conduits, certified to comply with the safety regulations in all countries in which the shower is available.

"The result is something that is not just a shower, nor just a lamp, but a hybrid – a magic trick with light and water that is available day after day." (Oki Sato, Nendo Studio).


Sound Wave, created in the UK for a brand of sanitary ware, is the very first integrated bath audio system, adding a whole new dimension to those precious opportunities to relax.

The system can be fitted to all the bathtub models produced by the manufacturers, with all the components and a Bluetooth receiver concealed under the bath. This enables the bath to “play” audio files by connecting to any Bluetooth-enabled device (smartphone, computer, tablet etc.) and acts as a special sound box, enabling the user to literally immerse themselves in the vibrations of their favourite playlist.

Sound and music are known to promote and induce relaxation, when they chime with personal preferences, as well as having a positive influence on moods and states of mind. Thus, combining a bath – which is calming in itself – with the acoustic and tactile effects of the sound waves carried through the water, means taking the wellness experience and the simultaneous involvement of all the senses to a whole new level.

Possibly more than any other part of the house, bathrooms reflect the need for individuality of those interacting with this system, providing an experience that everyone living in the house can tailor to their own personal taste.