Ensuite renovation by Schulz Construction in North Vancouver

The sanctuary space.

This zone should be a spacious and airy retreat. When approaching the design of ensuites with our clients, my main focus revolves around luxurious, well-wearing finishes.

Let’s start with function first. Wherever possible, it’s ideal to have a separate water closet, as this allows two people to use the space at the same time while maintaining some semblance of privacy.

Pro tip: Never forget to sit on your toilet before buying it. Too often, the seat isn’t congruent with the bottom of the client, and this is not a place for missing the mark, so to speak.

Next up… What’s the secret to any successful partnership? Two sinks! I am still surprised how many times I see this is not a priority in some architectural drawings. For the resale factor alone, the double vanity is key. When the space allows it, I love creating two separate vanities.

Then the shower. Fundamental to this planning is to factor in how many bathers are there. Each person needs approximately 9 sqft, so if this isn’t possible, then sticking to a single-person shower is more suitable.

Floating benches are a current (and enduring) trend, they give flexibility for shaving, aging in place, and simply relaxing.

There are so many shower systems available it can quickly lead to overwhelm. I tend to lean towards products that have a multifunctional shower valve. This means that the walls aren’t cluttered with extra shutoffs and handles. Riobel has mastered this with their multi-function valve systems. Beautifully designed with second-to-none service.

I also love to get creative with a niche layout, creating a ledge that stretches the length of the shower or stacking two niches vertically. Even adding LED lighting for some drama!

And last but not least — the bathtub. One thing I think many designers miss is having their clients actually sit in the tub. This must be a comfortable space for your client. The ensuite truly must speak to the user, and I love to engage homeowners in this selection process because loving the feel and finish of this space is really quite important.

There really are no limits when you are creating a custom home. If you’re planning on building or renovating a home on Vancouver’s North Shore, we’d be happy to chat about your project!

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