After a long day of traveling, there’s nothing quite like the serenity you feel after you finally check in to your room, line up all your toiletries on the gloriously expansive bathroom countertop, and take a hot shower (or bath, if you’re lucky). Hotel designers take extra care to ensure that their bathrooms create a calming experience for guests—which is why they’re a major source of inspiration for our own homes.

Whether you’re looking to tackle a small DIY project or a major bathroom renovation, there are tons of design tricks to steal from the most luxurious, unique accommodations around the world. Here are some of our favorite ideas.

Go Monochromatic


In Mauritius’s Salt of Palmar hotel, the showers are done up completely in red square tiles, making them a destination in and of themselves. A simple ribbed glass shower screen balances things out, so it’s not too much.


Pair Two Bold Colors Together

Photo by Meghan Mcneer Photography by

When it comes to color, why stop at just one? L.A.’s super-buzzy Firehouse Hotel is full of inspiring color combinations, including in this bathroom, where mustard yellow tiles and tomato red cabinets are an unlikely power couple.

Put Your Tub in Your Shower

courtesy of ace hotel Photography by amazon

Try to name a feature more luxurious than a standing shower that also contains a bathtub. The Ace Hotel New Orleans makes a compelling case for this doubled-up bathing situation, which boasts glossy gray tiles and a charcoal ceiling to keeps things cohesive.

Color-Block With Tile Rather Than Paint

PHOTO BY ANDREA BEHRENDS Photography by succulently urban Etsy

Of course a church-turned-hotel has the most heavenly bathrooms. In Nashville’s The Russel, an allover yellow shower matches the tiling behind the sink. The two swaths of color help balance things out so no one feature dominates.

Mix and Match

photo by karel balas Photography by amazon

The über-cool Hotel Des Grands Boulevards in Paris made waves for its bold design—and the bathrooms are no exception. Why limit yourself to one tile pattern or color when you can have three? In this space, hexagon wall tiles ground the pale blue paint and pink checkered floor tiles, making for one sophisticated room.


Save With Subway Tiles

photo by SUMMER THORNTON Photography by

Tiling a shower can be expensive—unless you use subway tile, an affordable classic that will still create a spa-like vibe. Plus, saving money on tile means you can splurge on other details. 

Pair Marble With Brass

photo by est living Photography by Brit + Co

You can’t go wrong with a marble and brass combination. The clean lines of the vanity in this bathroom at the 11 Howard in New York City keep the timeless materials looking streamlined and bright. All-white walls and flooring let the fixtures and gorgeous countertop do the talking. 

Opt for a Floating Vanity

photo by the serra hotel Photography by

More often than not, a hotel bathroom will feature a floating countertop with a lower shelf. Why? The extra ledge is storage and display space in one. Case in point: this sleek and modern space at The Serras Hotel in Barcelona.

Light It Up

photo by shangri la hotel Photography by Brit + Co

Oversize windows make this already large bathroom in the Shangri La Toronto look even bigger, while the around-the-mirror vanity lighting is as flattering as it gets. A good glow—both natural and artificial—is crucial. 


Throw in Some Textiles

Photo by aaron haxton Photography by amazon

L.A.’s Hotel Covell has nine guest suites, each one of a kind. A mishmash of textures and materials, like the beautiful antique rug balanced against the industrial metal sconce and natural wicker tray, add instant interest to this otherwise neutral bathroom.

This story was originally published on January 14, 2017. It has since been updated. 

See more hotels we love: Introducing the New Wave of Boutique Hotels All the Spring Decor Inspo You Need, Courtesy of This Colombian Hotel This Free-Spirit Hotel in Amsterdam Puts Compelling Decor First