10 Instagram-Worthy Public Washrooms

Feature Image Courtesy: Unicorns Exist, MuseLAB’s Studio in Mumbai; Photography Credits: The Fishy Project


More than two centuries ago, when water closets were invented, they were solely utilitarian. Today, washrooms are more than just functional. They provide an escape and are the much-needed rejuvenation hubs. They also reflect inclusivity, privacy and hygiene, along with being platforms for cultural expression. A well-designed public washroom says a lot about the place it is built in, boosting its reputation and uplifting its vibe.

Washrooms are the new mini-retreats and an opportunity to create a stunning aesthetic space through thoughtful design. As Love That Design takes you through ten of the most Instagram-worthy public washrooms from around the world, we’ll reinforce King George V’s expression, “Always go to the bathroom when you have a chance.” Ready to click?

Photography credits: Zheng Yan

With chic sanitaryware done up in stunning blacks and browns, the eclectic prismatic wall and elegant marble flooring will impress you the most about W Hotel’s washroom. The flow of colour through the walls splashes across the bathroom with a metallic sheen and futuristic speck. An inclusive restroom that transcends time, it is separated only by an intriguing copper column that enhances usability. 

At the first glimpse, you’ll experience what the designer Wu Wei wanted to achieve – an urban, trendy design against the rich, ancient backdrop of Xi’an city. At the second glimpse, you’ll enter a completely different world from the one outside, with your encounter made richer through the washroom’s enticing industrial fixtures. 

Photography credits: Andrea Martiradonna Photography

A delicate harmony between history and innovation, the design of the washrooms at the Pallazo Tirso Hotel is the thread that connects the dots between the two. An ode to the stunning landscapes of Cagliari, the design takes inspiration from the city’s character, subtly bringing it out through rich and sustainable materials. 

With emphasis on the use of stone, the colours of the washroom are also a nod to the bygone era. The redeveloped building showcases the newness of intricate design, strengthening the old beams of the structure and creating a space that welcomes at all times. The sliding wooden doors and the lit-up mirrors set against the greys and browns make the washroom a destination in itself.

Photography credits: Fritz Asuro Photography

La Villa Medusa Restaurant has an opulent washroom that depicts Arabian hospitality at its best, doubling up on the grandeur. With illuminated mirrors in different shapes that perfectly marry the bright accents of the space, the wooden framing complements the black granite flooring spectacularly. 

Feel invited to a golden a-la-grande escape, with even the fixtures decked up in gold. The restaurant washroom is a nod to Art Deco with bold shapes and sleek lines that offer a sensory extravaganza.

Photography credits: Andrew Weaver Photography

You’ll sync to the tunes of the Savannah as soon as you enter the rustic washroom at Marriott’s Masai Mara Lodge in Kenya, prepping for or unwinding after a fun safari. The warm, earthy tones of the interiors, along with the wooden floor, create a symphony with the illuminated timber-framed mirrors. The hanging lamps and the tropical plants are the cherries on the cake. 

While the beige-textured wooden wall forms the focal point of the washroom, the woven bamboo elements, like circular mirrors, bring out the region’s craftsmanship, adding to the allure of the space. 

Designed in a vivid bottle green, the washroom at Hyundai’s VIP Lounge is eclectic, with fluid and organic shapes adorning its interiors. Designed by Jamie Hayon to cater to Hyundai’s youngest clientele and their avant-garde sensibilities, the space’s bold colours and geometric patterns invoke a sense of playfulness. 

The lounge, described by Hayon as a “jungle of ideas”, has a washroom that makes the most of contrasts with ceramic fixtures, glass mirrors and granite surfaces. Using just two colours – white and green, Hayon makes the curvilinear door arouse intrigue even before you enter the washroom.

Photography credits: Tooze Studio

The restroom at the Knead Bakery in Dubai brings France to the UAE. Designed thoughtfully in the famous French style, it also kneads in the warmth of the Arabian world with muted brown and white interiors. An oval mirror with two wall sconces and tap fixtures in the same black finish form the heart of the washroom.

Second to serenity, the washroom is welcoming, with slightly veined granite surfaces, a moulded ceiling and glossy cream tiles that catch and play with light.

Photography credits: Suleiman Merchant

Purple Backyard has intelligently imagined this washroom that stands out because of the placement of the elements and thoughtful detailing. Think, a curvilinear, illuminated mirror, positioned horizontally, with its base attached to a pistachio-green wall and a muted brown wooden table – a sight for sore eyes.

The bamboo mat on the ceiling, tiled walls, thoughtfully installed artworks, a plant on the table, and a diffuser with floral patterns engage all the senses. The washroom at Mastermind Bicycle Cafe in the city of dreams unleashes space maximisation at its fullest, being minimalist and alluring simultaneously.

Photography credits: Varvara Toplennikova

This luxurious restroom brings Balinese hospitality right into the heart of Russia! Designed in an industrial chic style, the unconventional grey and gold combination becomes spell-binding in this exciting space. A long, flowy mahogany-brown curtain provides complete privacy within the washroom and works as a blank canvas to help the other design components stand out. 

The golden edges of the eclectic mirror complement the metallic gilded sheen of the sink base, becoming the centre point of the design theme effortlessly. Feel the comfort and calm of Balinese terraces here, along with the spell cast by the harmony of contrasts.

Photography credits: Wen Studio

Situated inside a 100-year-old villa, Bob Chen Design Office has revitalised an old space with renewed vigour that impresses. The interplay of Chinese and Western elements in the washroom works wonderfully to invite a gasp – if the marble flooring and walls were not fabulous enough. As you look into the circular golden mirror perched above a white sink on a black base, the veining patterns transport you to an oasis.  

The black marble floor and the wooden walls cradle the theme to perfection without making it appear too Western or traditional. The washroom at Sangyun Villa is a fine example of what balance can do to design. This time, it has given rise to a powerful poetic expression. 

Photography credits: Naveed Siraj Productions

If you visit here, you’ll go ‘Click, click, click!’. Thanks to its optical illusions. The out-of-the-box space, designed by the renowned architect Shahrooz Zomorrodi, stretches the boundaries of design. Delivering a multi-sensory experience, the washroom of this space plays with shadows on the backdrop of a bright red wall that leaves behind an indelible mark.

Based on the principles of bionic architecture to make the interiors nature-friendly, the washroom uses multiple illuminated circular concave mirrors, long tube-like ceramic sinks and recessed lighting to do the magic. You’ll discover the getaway you need with numerous silhouettes of feminine forms in different poses projected on the wall through the play of light.

Photography credits: Imagensubliminal

Mirror, mirror on the wall – the washroom at this restaurant in Santander can leave you in awe with its infinity mirror illusion, especially with the spotlight on it – literally, too! With one circular, golden-framed mirror on each wall, the designer excels at making the space appear bigger, brighter and endless, like the ocean.

The green, patterned spotted tiles resembling a fish’s scales frame the sink and the basin perfectly, as the off-white wall synergises beautifully with the elements. The timeless white sink and silver fixtures let the theme of the underwater world flow seamlessly with the right blend of abstract and curved geometry.

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Date added:

12 September, 2023

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