I’m constantly amazed by the ever-changing technology these days. It seems that something new and incredible is popping up every other day – something that we used to speculate about as kids (“wouldn’t it be SO COOL if we could see the person we were talking to on the phone?”). I’m still pretty young but I remember the introduction of a lot of “new” technology (caller ID, cell phones, personal home computers and printers, digital cameras…) into my life. Now my little boy wants to know what a phone booth is and why you’d need one, who’s calling as soon as the phone rings, and why I call CDs “tapes.” I feel like a dinosaur… and I’m not even thirty!
I never quite thought, though, that bathrooms had the potential to be high-tech. I mean, what can you do with a bathroom already? You need a sink, a toilet, and a shower. The coolest fitting I’ve seen is a towel warmer. How revolutionary could a restroom be?
Well, I was wrong, apparently. Check out these futuristic fixtures and vote (at the bottom of the page) on which, if any, you’d like to have in your bathroom!
Toilets don’t seem to have changed much since their invention (except for the discarding of padded toilet seats like my grandmother had, yuck!). Aside from different shapes, colors, and mounting options, a toilet is a toilet, right?
Wrong! Enter Kohler’s Numi toilet. The Numi is a streamlined, water-efficient, compact, and exceedingly intelligent piece. It features a hands-free motion-activated heated seat and an integrated, self-cleaning, customizable bidet with warm air dryer (heaven forbid your behind should be cold at any time!). In case your feet feel left out, floor-level vents heat the floor and your tootsies so you’re toasty all over; it also lights up (customizable, of course) for those who have trouble finding the toilet at night. It deodorizes (this is one feature I’d go for – no more smelly bathrooms!) and flushes automatically with a “sophisticated system” designed to save water. And of course, no toilet experience is complete without a wireless music stream. Worried about where you’ll store your magazines (you old fossil!)? No need – you can keep busy with the wireless remote (a magnetic docking station ensures it doesn’t fall in), which you can conveniently use to save your preferred toilet settings.
How much will it cost you? Kohler’s list price is a mere $5,978. If you’re not looking to spend that much (you must be a cheapskate), Duravit’s SensoWash line offers many similar features for less than a quarter of the price.
Duravit Starck 3 Wall-Mounted Toilet with SensoWash
No, not built in to the toilet itself, just in the bathroom. Of course you need a television in the bathroom! What else are you supposed to do in there?
Actually, I can’t say I’d mind being able to watch a great show while taking a long, hot bath. I like to read in the bath, but that’s resulted in the soggy demise of one book too many. So the Northstar Recessed Waterproof TV is looking pretty attractive to me – it’s generally marketed for luxury hotels but makes appearances in regular folks’ bathrooms too. Because it’s recessed, it fits discreetly into the wall and is barely noticeable when it’s not on. An added plus: the waterproof remote floats!
Northstar Recessed Waterproof TV
Now what I don’t need is an in-mirror screen. That’s right! Séura’s Vanishing Television Mirrors promise that “your morning routine will never be the same.” Because your morning routine of brushing your teeth and washing your face will be so much more enjoyable if you can watch TV in the mirror as you’re getting ready. When you turn it off, it vanishes to look like a regular mirror (“because every morning needs a little magic”). I can just imagine the conversations in a house with one of these: “Turn off that TV! You’re supposed to be brushing your teeth! And we need to go in two minutes!” “I AM brushing my teeth!”
Enhanced Vanishing Television Mirror
Pretty cool – but would you go for either of these?
Get clean – in style! The Alfi 8” LED rain shower head will make you feel like a superstar when you sing in the shower (no, unfortunately, it won’t make you sound any better). It lights up when the water’s turned on and will dim and brighten automatically with water pressure adjustments for mood lighting in the shower. What I love about it (besides the relatively low price tag) is that it changes color according to the water temperature, so you won’t get scalded if you step in without feeling the water first.
Alfi LED Rain Shower Head
If light-up showers won’t do it for you, how about tanning in the shower? With the ProSun Sunshower, you can safely and conveniently bronze yourself while you get clean. Talk about multi-tasking!
The SmartFaucet by iHouse is truly a technological marvel. It is equipped with facial recognition technology to deliver your favorite water temperature and flow so that you can wash your hands without annoyances like adjusting the tap. Integrated temperature-sensitive LEDs illuminate the water for a built-in lightshow in case the faucet’s touch screen – which can display email, your calendar, and the weather, to name a few – is not exciting enough.
SmartFaucet by iHouse
Now here’s my major problem with these ultramodern washrooms: if something breaks, do you call a plumber or a programmer?
Do you want any of these or are you happy with your “old-fashioned” bathroom? Vote for your favorite below (you can pick more than one) and tell us why you love it in the comments!