Freestanding bath in a bedroom: the practical considerations

Does the luxury hotel trend for a freestanding bath in a bedroom translate into everyday living?

By Hugh Metcalf | 15 June 2020

Love this boutique hotel-inspired concept, but not sure it will work for everyday living? Here’s what you need to know.

Whether you’ve stayed in a luxury hotel that features one, or simply seen one in the pages of a glossy interiors magazine, chances are you’re familiar with the idea of a freestanding bath situated in a bedroom.

How you feel about it may be a different story. On one side, it could be seen as form over function, whilst on the other, an interesting way to think outside the box with your interior layout.

However, it’s not a new trend, says Sally Cutchie, marketing manager at BC Designs: “It can be traced back to the Middle Ages when many of the rich lords would have a bath in their bedroom. Fast forward to the 1990s and the trend was revived by boutique hotels placing free standing roll‐top baths at the end of huge beds.”

Consider these pros and cons, and practical considerations when deciding if this style is for you.

rolltop bath in a barn style bedroom - grand designs - home improvement

Photo: BC Designs Boat Bath, from £1,480

Benefits of bath in bedroom

Perhaps at the core of this trend is the want to create a space to showcase increasingly beautiful bathtubs. “Freestanding baths can cost a lot of money which is perhaps why people are choosing to show them off by putting them centre stage in the bedroom,” explains Sally.

However, there’s practical reasons that home builders and renovators are considering them too. En-suite bathrooms tend to be smaller than family bathrooms, and for those who long for a little quiet time to unwind in the bath, locating this in a small space may not be ideal.

If you have a large bedroom already, putting a freestanding tub into this space may be easier than the work required to enlarge an ensuite bathroom. It might also not end up being much more work than installing in a bathroom. “Many consumers can be put off of installing [freestanding baths] in a bathroom as the plumbing needs to be moved, coming up from the floor rather than out from the wall,” explains Sally, “but this is the case for the bedroom too and actually involves about the same amount of work.”

bath in main bedroom wardrobe - grand designs - home improvement

Photo: Havwoods