When it comes to designing a space that's both functional and chic, Laurel & Wolf Designer, Lucinda Pace is an expert. As she began the process of revamping the men's restroom of Venice Beach's trendy Hotel Erwin, she envisioned a space that captured the essence of the beach and reflected the hip look and feel of the rest of the hotel.
When Hotel Erwin opened their rooftop lounge in 2007, the only restrooms available to visitors were two stories below the roof. Because this was a new construction, the building had to abide by hospitality and ADA guidelines, and be approved by the city's Coastal Commission. In order to create a sustainably responsible design, Lucinda needed to jump through lots of hoops.
As the restroom would mainly be used by guests visiting the rooftop bar, Lucinda immediately recognized that the space needed to be designed for "high-traffic use and durability, due to the possibility of vandalism over time." Keeping this in mind, she looked for graffiti-proof materials, but made sure to infuse intricate elements so that the design would not appear sterile.
When Lucinda began working on the design in May 2015, she knew she wanted things to remain clean and modern, but she also wanted to update the overall look of the hotel. "Once we got the plumbing in place, I began researching unique tile to use in the design. I figured that if I could reflect the feeling of the beach in a contemporary way, I could do so through my choice in tile," explained Lucinda. To recreate the local atmosphere of Venice, she worked with Arto Brick, a family owned company in Gardena that creates amazingly unique pieces. "The entire design was inspired by a stunning, two-dimensional, hand-painted tile coated with concentric circles in beautiful blues and grays, which immediately reminded me of the ocean," Lucinda remarked.
The other finishes were kept clean and simple with white subway tile, honed-gray hex tile for the floors, and Dunn Edwards Carrara on the ceilings. Lucinda incorporated hybrid water closets and urinals from Kohler, and designed a troth-style sink with Sloan to keep everything in one place. From the left to the right of the faucets are soap dispensers and a hand dryer, so there's no need to leave the sink area or even use paper towels when washing and drying your hands. One of Lucinda's favorite features are the gobo-style lights that reflect the temperature on the basin of the sink mount.
Above the mirrors, an Insulator Glass Sconce from Elk lighting creates an iridescent glow and reflects the gorgeous chrome finishes of the restroom's fixtures, while maintaining sustainability. The textured stainless steel stalls are the perfect complement to the chrome fixtures in the space and provide comfortable privacy for hotel guests. Lucinda put the finishing touches on the restroom with exposed wood beams, stained a natural honey color to add some warmth to the cool tones in the rest of the design.
Designed by Lucinda Pace with photography by Sean Robertson.