It is becoming increasingly popular to have a freestanding bathtub and shower in a glass enclosed area or in just an open space. These can be apart from the sink and toilet in the bathroom in a separate enclosure or they can be freestanding with no enclosure. Bath/shower combinations have been very popular in Japan for many years, where bathing for relaxation is an important part of their culture. People can take a relaxing bath and then thoroughly wash off in the shower without having to move into a chilly space. The enclosure must be completely waterproof so there is no problem with water spreading all over the space.
Wetroom configurations are also particularly helpful for people with disabilities. These are consistent with Universal Design concepts. “Universal Design is the design and composition of an environment so that it can be accessed, understood and used to the greatest extent possible by all people regardless of their age, size, ability or disability. An environment (or any building, product, or service in that environment) should be designed to meet the needs of all people who wish to use it.”
These rooms are being incorporated into many homes today by young people as well as older people. Younger people want to build their homes so they will be safe for elderly parents and also in case of an accident – such as a broken leg.
Wet rooms are also excellent for washing pets. It is much easier than trying to get your little critter in a bathtub or shower enclosure.
Wet rooms also make the room look bigger than it is. This is particularly advantageous in small houses.
However, there are construction requirements necessary to make this type of bathroom work. The floor should be graded so the water goes toward the drain. Storage also has to be considered so that towels and toilet paper are not soaked by the shower water. The choice of vanity must also be considered so that if it continues to get wet, it won’t get ruined.