Oct 30, 2006

Bathroom blogfest week - Restrooms v/s toilets...not just a matter of semantics

My most memorable experiences in the loo date back to my days in college when I spent long hours outside of home or college with friends.Our rambling almost always came to an abrupt end with one of us wanting to visit the loo. At that time no matter where we were, we would head straight to the gateway of india...near which is the luxurious Taj Mahal hotel. While entering we chattered loudly about visiting their pastry shop or visiting some imaginary uncle / aunt who was their guest - out of fear - so that the durbaan (concierge) did not take note of us as just a bunch of giggly girls who ambled into the foyer for no reason.

Once inside the restroom however, the fear gave way to fantasy ...for it was difficult not to lose oneself in that brightly lit room, treating oneself to the cold fresh face towels re-stocked regularly beside elegant faucets. There were dispensers that doled out generous portions of rich creamy fragrant liquid soap. One could admire oneself in the many full length mirrors placed at angles that would allow one to make girly comparisons ranging from whose hair looked the best when tossed behind to whose backside looked the worst ! I do vaguely remember that those rooms had fresh flowers that completed the circle of luxury for me.

Honestly speaking, for those few minutes (read 20) i spent there - I felt like royalty. Luxurious bathrooms or even tastefully designed bathrooms, atleast in India, have been regarded a luxury a privileged few have access to. I don't know the reason - whether it is cultural or habitual or just the state of development in the country - but bathrooms & toilets have for long been neglected terrains. Public facilities are best left untouched (in more ways than one) here for the unsavoury memories they conjure up but even in people's homes and in some cases even rich homes, the toilets i have seen have been a let-down. It could be because of the strong notions of 'purity' that people held on to - not just in the physical sense but also in a cultural sense (cleaning of toilets were considered menial tasks confined to people from the lowest castes). It was also for this reason that historically toilets and bathrooms found their place away from the main house - in a courtyard.
Coming back to the loo at the Taj Mahal hotel, apart from the grandeur that obviously comes with 5 star standards, what was memorable for me was - that it was a place where i did not pinch my nose and rush out. It was a 'room' a place where i did not mind spending time. In fact it was a place where i felt good spending time. It's not without reason that those facilities were and still are referred to as - 'Restrooms'. More than a matter of semantics, words like restroom / powder room / ladies rooms connote an experience.

It's not always possible to rush to a Taj and let's face reality that there are only a handful 5 star facilities but it's possible to recreate the same feeling

#Strip the bathroom of that clinically clean / industrial look.
# Introduce Pretty lamp shades instead of jarring white tube lights

# Place Mirrors set in beautiful frames
# Keep Fresh flowers...and if that is an avoidable chore...potted plants are good too
# Embellish with Pot pourri / paintings / beads and baubles - anything to give it a little personal touch

What I liked about this tile border, apart from the cheery sunflower design, is the detailing at the centre of the flowers...those stand out from the rest of the border giving it a 3- D feel.

This bathroom has soft yellow lights, ornate lampshades and even a little ceiling fan - truly adding to the comfort and making it look very personal

customer experience, bathroom blogfest, ladiesrooms


Jude Novak said...

Bathroom is one of the most important place inside your house. That’s why it is very important to pay as much attention as much you are paying towards your drawing room, bedrooms and lounge. The fixtures and fittings of a bathroom should be insert such that it should be utilized fully and easy to handle. Placement of the accessories should be done with utmost care. Now the people have become attentive about the accessories for their bathrooms and they want varieties in that as they want the suitable accessories with suitable placement inside their bathroom.

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