How to create a boutique hotel style ensuite bathroom.

So let’s chat ensuite’s, we’ve all been there, boutique hotel sitting in a roll top bath thinking how at peace you feel, that little luxury of space adjacent to the bedroom. Only to return home to piles of washing on your bedroom floor, makeup bags overflowing with product, precariously balanced on your bedside table.

OK. So here are the elements to consider when making a box room /dumping ground into an ensuite, and not just any ensuite, one that most boutique hotels would be envious of.

Let’s start with the What & How questions?

What’s the best size for an ensuite bathroom?

The best size for a box room conversion to ensuite bathrooms is 2m x 1.5m, at the other end of the spectrum, you can go as large as your space permits.  Our designs always allow for a standard shower tray (usually 900 x 900mm), wall hung toilet and vanity unit. Freestanding baths will work in space of a shower tray and frameless shower screen. The minimum width between sanitary wear we would suggest is 80 cm, or as I often describe to clients a person width, if you can turn in the space between the basin and the shower that’s your absolute minimum.

How much does it cost to create an ensuite bathroom?

The cost is dependant on the quality of your sanitary wear, your tiling design and most importantly the installer’s fees.  On average our entry-level ensuite projects cost £6,5000 inclusive of installation.

When looking at ensuite bathrooms, we often start with the need.

Why are you creating this additional room?  

Is it to ease the congestion in the family bathroom?

Are you looking for a sanctuary to retreat to after work?

The answer to the majority of these questions is …….


Think back to the boutique hotel ensuite experience, what were the elements of the bathroom design that resonated with you?  Was it the ability to chat with your partner whilst wallowing in the bath, or store your makeup in a JO Malone showroom style display? List these and then use them to plan the layout of the new ensuite.

Bathroom design points to consider

When creating the ensuite design, the key is to create a visual divide between the master bedroom and ensuite, allowing the bathroom to seem spacious, with an abundance of light. This can in the form of frosted glass partition doors or concealed pocket doors.

Wall hung fittings, such as vanity units and toilets, increase the floor space by fixing to the wall, and they, therefore, create the illusion of space. As seen here in our Surrey project we used wall hung toilet and a striped tiling pattern that draws the eye across the room.

Storage space comes in the form of built-in shower niches, these house all the bottles and jars in one space for ease of and most importantly stops them kamikaze onto your foot when entering the shower. Built-in niches ensure everything has its place, without encroaching into the bathrooms usable space.

So there you have it ensuites 101! The images featured in this blog post are from our Surrey project having implemented the above we achieved the boutique hotel vibe in our client home. 

That’s all folks! I really hope you found the piece interesting, and as always I’m happy to answer any further questions you may have or head over to email All images & mood board copyright are owned by Emma merry styling except where noted. Please make sure you credit and link/tag if you use them. All photography & rights owned by . Thank you x


Do you find vanity units a complete minefield of quality, size and price?

Below we’ve broken down a few of our high street favourites along with an outline of considerations on purchasing a vanity unit that is fit for purpose.

Vanity units are essentially bathroom cabinets that sit at the base of a sink, these the most common types of built-in furniture. You can have one that covers the sink pedestal or, to make even more use of the space, consider having a ‘floating’ basin that sits on top of a unit or is embedded into it. The above industrial vibe is a mix of storage and shelving allowing you space to conceal toiletries whilst having easy access to towels. You can also get combination bathroom vanity units that adjoin a sink and toilet to create one large cabinet. These are good if your bathroom is small as they make use of often-wasted space between a sink and toilet. 

Vanity units, depending on their size, have various storage options. Think again about what you’ll be storing – Do you need to hide the copious bath toys? Would you want shelves inside the cabinets for bespoke makeup storage? Will soft close drawers make for a an easier life? Will you need to make space for, a loo-roll holder and the storage of toilet paper?

Vanity units also allow you to play around with materials and colours. There are a lot of different worktop options, from marble effect to stone, that can bring another layer of design and a different feeling to your bathroom. Mixing materials are a huge trend at the moment and the below is a perfect option to add a bespoke marble countertop, this can be sourced locally from a stone mason for around £150.

If you have quite a lot of space, you could have a much more expansive vanity unit that spans the width of a wall . Most of the big-name brands sell a range of vanity units, but if you have the budget and want something very specific, you could also consider asking a builder to make bespoke bathroom storage for you. Many different options and we would always recommend asking your designer and fitter before you purchase for their expert opinion on what will work best for your needs.

Now you have selected your new vanity unit, its time for the fun to begin! Below we have created a high street bathroom accessories board to help you shop the look.

Madras towel hook – £12.99 – Anthropologie

Jute bathmat – £17.99 – H&M

Jute linen basket -£24.99 H&M

OLOGE terracotta planter – £95 – La Redoute

Scenario pale green face cloths -£8 – la Redoute

Calamus rattan chair – £269 – La redoute

Trocadero double vanity unit and basins – £1,289 – Masions Du Monde

Curve green wall mirror -£89 – Oliver Bonas

Raised design bathroom set – starting at £7.99 – Zara home

That’s all folks! I really hope you found the piece interesting, and as always I’m happy to answer any further questions you may have or head over to email – emma@EmmaMerryStyling .All images & mood board copyright are owned by Emma merry styling except where noted. Please make sure you credit and link/tag if you use them. Thank you x

Happy shopping bathroom bunnies x


Well, it seems like you all have quite the appetite for tiling dos and don’ts, so im going to attempt to answer some of your questions posted via

Bathroom, shower rooms, en-suites and cloakrooms are some of the most functional rooms with your home, but they don’t have to always look functional and sterile. When starting to design my bathroom schemes, I always start with the tiles; floor, wall, splash backs and niches can all rock a different finish, however where do you start?

1: How do you tell your porcelain from your cement tile?

2: Can you put a wall tile on the floor?

3: Is grout & sealant available in any colour?

4: Are there any tiling hacks that will save time and money?

The answer to all of the above is YAAAAAAAS.

1: How do you tell your porcelain from your cement tile?

Generally speaking, porcelain tiles is tougher,harder wearing than a ceramic tile. Porcelain and cement tiles are both made form clay and go through the same firing process however the clay used to make porcelain is pure therefore creates a more refined finish. The other difference in porcelain and cement tiles is the cost, high end Porcelain tiles will set you back 20% more than its rival the cement tile. But well worth it for high traffic areas, that need to be hard wearing.

2: Can you put a wall tile on the floor?

Tiles that are created as wall tiles are usually thinner and therefore lighter than floor tiles. When the tiles are finished and glazed it will be not be glazed to withstand the footfall of a floor tile. If you have a light traffic area like an ensuite used once a day I would say go right ahead and lay a wall tile on the floor.

On the other hand, can you use a wall tile as a floor tile?

I would advise against this until you know the thickness of the tile, these tiles are often heavy so your walls may not withstand the weight.

The exception to this rule is reclamed tiles, If you head over to / Chris has a great selection of wall and floor tiles that can mix and match in both areas.

3: Is grout & sealant available in any colour?

The simple answer is yes, http://www.mapei. have a huge range of colours from light to dark, from bright to muted.

When using grout, think of it as a highlighter pen for your tiles. if you want to highlight the pattern on a small splash back look at the opposite colour to your tile in the group e.g: white tile, deep grey grout. Alternatively to mute the tiling pattern match the grout to the tile.

4: Are there any tiling hacks that will save time and money?

Tiling hacks that will save you money are to look at sheet tiles, these are smaller mosaic tiles that come in pre-formatted sheets and can be laid quickly like a larger tile, this saves you time on the tiler’s bill and money on the individual tiles.

The other alternative to ceramic tiles are thick waterproof panels. (as featured in the above) have a wonderfull selection, these fasten to the wall with adhesive, they can even be fixed over the top of existing tiles, perfect for a quick fix.

That’s all folks! I really hope you found the piece interesting, and as always I’m happy to answer any further questions you may have on tiling. Feel free to head over to the contact us page or email me on emma@EmmaMerryStyling All images & mood board copyright are owned by Emma merry styling except where noted. Please make sure you credit and link/tag if you use them. Thank you x


Internal windows made from fluted glass are becoming a thing. That’s because while we all love light & bright spaces, not all homes were designed to make the most of natural light.

For many years, the greatest answer to a home lacking natural light has been to knock down walls and establish open-plan living. Adding floor-to-ceiling windows helps. But for those looking for alternative ways to increase the sense of natural light while maintaining privacy, fluted glass is the answer.


Agreed… cheesy title. But it really is the Powder Room of Dreams. Before I got my hands on it, it was the ‘Cloakroom of Despair’. A 0.7 x 1.2-metre space that’s literally no bigger than a traditional cupboard under the stairs.

My mind was made up that this cloakroom bathroom was going to pack a punch as soon as you opened the door. I wanted colour, texture and an extraordinary high-end finish to be the key factors in this bathroom.

This is where we started. You won’t believe the number of people that said prior to this project, “Honestly, your cloakroom is not that bad!” You can’t blame them. They weren’t to know the moodboard I had been planning in my head all those years.

A sloping ceiling was my initial concern. I found the solution was to unify the walls and ceiling in the form of wallpaper, however it need to be abstract or this would work against the lines of the room. Enter Splatter Wallpaper by Sanderson. This was perfect and, not to mention, within budget (only as it was such a small space).

Walls done. Next was brassware – or taps to you and I. I was obsessed with the idea of rose gold, however not so keen on the reflective qualities. Then I noticed a new finish… brushed red gold. Seemed like the perfect solution to me, but I always double check my design ideas by creating a moodboard of the whole look. Once I was happy that all the elements worked together, it was time to look at layout options.

The layout was limiting as quite frankly it’s a tiny space, however I did have options with the basin. Initially I’d been looking at getting a stand-alone basin on a bench-style unit, however this was not going to contribute to the sleek finish I had in my mind. Then I found the petrol blue cabinet in a gloss finish… boom! There it was – that light-enhancing piece that would give the illusion of at least another half a metre.

Furniture complete, I could move on to the most exciting part… tiles. Y’see, I have this thing with tiles. Literally, I have samples galore. I just love the finish, pattern, texture and their ability to transform any space instantly.

I knew herringbone was the pattern for me and blush pink an obvious choice, however the floor tiles were proving difficult due to the lack of bold, unique and cost-effective designs on the market. Enter Henley Ice Tile from Topps Tiles – clean, Moroccan-inspired design was the icing to my cloakroom cake. And there you have it! How I conceived, planned and implemented the ‘Powder Room of Dreams’.

Photography Courtesy of Paul Craig Photogrpahy 


C.P Hart – Bathroom furniture and brassware
Topps tiles – Wall & floor tiles
Sanderson – Splatter wallpaper
Oliver Bonus – Pebble wall mirror
Ocean lighting – Pendant light