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1st Floor Lona House
212 Upper Buitengracht
Bo Kaap, Cape Town, 8001

Jaime-Lee Gardner
072 171 1979

Louise Martin
073 335 4084

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Dazzle your guests

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Dazzle your guests

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Guest bathrooms are a chance to impress your visitors in private.

Many estate homes have a guest bathroom adjoining the living room area. It can be small and underwhelming, or you can take the initiative and make it impressive. After all, the guest loo is where your visitors have time to survey the space at their leisure, undisturbed. The best way to wow your guests is with design elements that will catch their eye, so don’t be afraid to go for something a bit out there. “Have fun with colours and textures. As it’s not a space you use often, you can let your creativity run free,” says Monika Krolewicz, interior designer at Ferreiras.

You can even introduce colour to your sanitaryware.

“The only caution here is if you decide to go for a zany colour, keep your wall tiles slightly plainer, as you don’t want your tiles and sanitaryware competing with each other,” says Danielle Sterling from Sterlings.  As to shape, a long, narrow wall-hung basin works best in smaller spaces, she says. A natural focus is the mirror, which in a guest bathroom can be large and interesting and, if you have the budget, illuminated.  “Illuminated mirror elements and mirror cabinets help a bathroom really stand out,” says Dorianne Isaacman, head of marketing at Geberit, which sells stylish mirror cabinets with three illuminated mirror elements that radiate pleasant, soft light at the washbasin.

Think too about the window, which can also be turned into a feature with a slatted wooden shutter letting in parallel strips of light. Taylor Blinds and Shutters sells a wood substitute Venetian blind (Stryo-Wood), which is great for bathrooms as it has the look of wood, but won’t bend, warp or discolour, even in a damp environment. A small space is best decorated with a white and off-white palette, but a feature of decorative or mosaic tiles adds a point of interest. “Mosaic tiles can really lift a space and add great colour and visual appeal to an area,” says Johnny Lamprecht from Bathroom Bizarre.

“Add mosaics as a border, or create a feature wall with them. If you choose a feature wall, then try to coordinate it with the rest of the bathroom tiles,” advises Lamprecht.

For a look of pure sophistication, marble tiles remain a timeless classic, and look particularly elegant and contemporary mixed with matt black finishes. Your guest is not moving in, so don’t worry about storage space. “Go slim and sleek on the vanities, or use freestanding statement piece basins,” suggests Krolewicz.

For hotel-style comfort, you can’t beat heated towel rails (HTR), all the better if the HTR is a feature in itself. Jeeves has just released its N28 floor-to-ceiling heated towel rail, a ladder towel rail that will warm up the towels and bathroom, while providing a striking focal point.

Finally, take a different view of lighting in your guest bathroom. A small hanging chandelier or pendant light warms up a bathroom beautifully, while creating a point of interest, as long as the ceiling is high enough.

“You don’t need much light here. If the space is slightly darker it creates a better ambience and you can introduce darker colours and play with feature lighting as well,” says Sterling.


Add those touches that will make your guest feel welcome while bringing beauty to the space – soap pumps, lotion, matching soap dish, and stylish waste basket.  Paper holders, robe hooks, soap racks and towel rings should also be carefully chosen to complement the theme of your bathroom. Matt black accessories are trending strongly at the moment, following the rose gold trend, like those sold by Bathroom Butler.  Just one caution here. Whatever you do, try to avoid getting too elaborate. Keep it simple.


  1. Skip the bath. Instead, add a large walk-in shower – guests are there to spend time with you, not your bath.
  2. Clean every nook and cranny, including toothbrush holders, showerheads and bathmats. If not properly sterilised and cleaned, bathrooms can be the source of disease.
  3. Bathrooms, along with kitchens, are big deal-breakers for home buyers considering a new property. So make your guest bathroom exceptional!

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