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Many of our Clients come to us inquiring about a specific room Renovation such as a main floor powder room or ensuite Renovation. Here is a compilation of frequently asked questions we often hear when it comes to bathroom Renovations.

What are the latest trends in Calgary bathroom renovation designs?

Powder rooms and ensuites are typically the highest on the wish list for many looking to Renovate.

We have seen a real trend towards consumers wanting to make a statement with their main floor powder room, incorporating an array of impressive design materials to create an elegant space for guests.

Ensuites continue to be spa inspired with the intent to create luxurious, tranquil spaces that encourage relaxation and revitalization. We have seen a definite tendency towards large walk-in showers in ensuites, sometimes at the expense of a soaker tub. These choices are always customer driven but it is particularly common when there is a limited amount of floor space available and a tub accessible in another main level bathroom. Some consumers would rather forfeit the footprint of the tub and have a larger shower if minimal impact on the existing floor plan is a concern. Other considerations include enclosing the toilet area; this is now an expectation in estate home design.

Creating a serene mood in bathrooms is vitally influenced by the lighting choices, making indirect lighting, pendant lighting and chandeliers popular as well as capitalizing on the natural light available. Light infiltration can be achieved through large windows and skylights as well as by enclosing the toilet area with opaque glass or 10 mil tempered glass.

Bringing the outside in by infusing organic substances like wood, stone and metal into the bathroom design is prevalent and authenticates the Zen like feel many are trying to achieve in their bathroom spaces; from river rock walls, polished limestone floors to bamboo laminate countertops and cast-concrete sinks that have the look and feel of carved stone; nature inspired design materials definitely abound.

When it comes to flooring, hand scraped wide planked hardwood in powder rooms where there is no shower is trending, along with antique distressed tile that actually looks like hardwood but can sustain moisture in ensuites.

Semi-submerged vessel sinks with high neck faucets continue their appeal along with the new found popularity of wall mounted toilets and bidets.

In addition, an aging population is prompting consideration of accessible features such as grab bars and the integration of curbless and level-access showers in bathroom designs. It is important to discuss with your Renovator not only your present needs but also your future needs so the design can integrate potential lifestyle changes with minimal future Renovation requirements when the time arises.

At the end of the day, your bathroom should be a reflection of you and your family’s present and future lifestyle requirements, integrating a design style that is authentic to your family. Ultimately your satisfaction with your end project will be greatly influenced by the time invested by your Renovator at the onset; ensure they have a significant Design Discovery Process in place that involves the entire team including architect, production staff, interior designer and all trades involved.

Long term we would like to Renovate several rooms in our home but we want to start with our ensuite; are there any considerations with this approach?

Bathroom Renovations are often part of a larger scale whole home Renovation; sometimes Clients prefer to Renovate in stages, starting with their highest priority single room Renovation like a bathroom or kitchen. As well, we often have Clients meet with us to discuss a specific room Renovation only to ascertain they actually want to continue Renovating several other rooms. It is of outmost importance that your Builder has a substantial Design Discovery Process in place to help you navigate your Renovation and any future Renovation plans you might have to mitigate any redundancies or added costs.

Work top down when it comes to considerations regarding plumbing; plumbing flows from the highest point to the lowest point. Looking at the entire home evolution versus from a single room Renovation perspective can greatly impact the design choices you make that could affect future Renovation plans. The following is a real life example of the impact this can have on a Renovation.

A Client came to us to Renovate the main floor of their home. During the Pinnacle Design Discovery Process, we discussed the fact that they were considering Renovating their second storey in the future. We strongly advised them to incorporate preparations for this potential phase 2 Renovation into the plan from the onset. Even though this would have incurred some additional up front design and build costs to accomplish this, in the long run this approach was a more cost efficient solution. This would have entailed burying the necessary plumbing and electrical in the walls and ceiling for future second storey Renovations during the first phase of the main floor Renovation; this would significantly reduce their phase 2 Renovation costs. Unfortunately they did not heed our advice and went forward with their main floor Renovation without future consideration for the second storey revitalization. Three years later we have now been asked to Renovate their second storey which unfortunately requires opening up their beautifully Renovated main floor ceiling to incorporate plumbing pipes for their ensuite Renovation on the second floor; ultimately this means portions of the main floor Renovation have to be done twice with added costs and lifestyle impact. Ensure your Builder helps you evaluate not only your immediate needs but your long term goals and thoroughly weigh these considerations.

We also see limitations placed on bathroom Renovations due to the location of plumbing fixtures; don’t let this determine the best use of the space. Using the right diagnostic tools, your Builder should be able to recommend the best possible solution to achieve your goals which may include relocating fixtures; ultimately you want your Builder to determine a plan of action that requires the least amount of impact and the most cost effective solution to maximize your use of space.

What are the advantages of hiring a Design-Build Firm when it comes to bathroom Renovations?

Design-Build is a term used to describe a project delivery system in which the design and construction of a project is contracted by a single entity known as the Design-Builder. There are many advantages to this system not only for bathroom Renovations but any Renovation project or Custom Home Build. Some Design-Build firms employ professionals from both the design and construction sector which is the case with Pinnacle Group; this creates a seamless communication forum. Naturally, the expertise and creativity of an Architect is required to draw up the plan. However, they may not be conversant in real-life construction applications; specifically as the design relates to associated costs of construction. What is designed and what occurs on the construction site can lead to a disconnect, resulting in major setbacks in project timelines and midway construction delays. Pinnacle Group actually goes one step further inviting not only the architect and production team to the initial design discovery conversation but also our interior designer and trades. Having all parties involved in the conversation from the onset allows valuable input into the final project solution, providing the Client with a synergistic solution and an achievable result. There is no stone left unturned; with this level of planning prior to the start of any Renovation project, unforseen project delays and costs are mitigated. This is why Pinnacle is the only Renomark™ Renovator to guarantee the start date, completion date and cost, known as their SCC Guarantee™.

As well, a reputable Design-Build Firm will also utilize leading edge diagnostic equipment such as a thermal camera to evaluate the build site prior to any initial tear down. The insight provided by this evaluation can greatly influence the final project specifications. For example, a thermal camera can identify the main stack location, heat run location, joist directions, and beam locations that are all buried behind the drywall. A reputable Design-Build contractor will invest in this equipment so they aren’t guessing or having to unnecessarily cut into your walls. Think of it like an MRI for your home; who would want a surgery performed on their body without first having the proper diagnosis; the surgeon has a plan and knows exactly what he or she is dealing with prior to the first cut just like a Builder who uses the right diagnostic equipment so they can plan the best execution of your Renovation requirements.

If you have any questions specific to your bathroom Renovation or other Renovation inquiries please contact us at 403-720-8789 or fill out our free online assessment form.

Case Study

What were the criteria for this ensuite Renovation?

  • Increase the footprint of the ensuite.
  • Create a relaxing, elegant ensuite sanctuary.
  • Position the large soaker tub as the focal point.
  • Integrate a crisp, contemporary design concept.
  • Incorporate an ample makeup counter.
  • Utilize a single sink as the couple is on different work schedules and never use the bathroom at the same time so dual sinks aren’t necessary; extra counter space was preferred instead.
  • Amplify the natural light transfer.

How was the criteria met?

There was no available floor space in the existing home to accommodate an expansive ensuite, so a new floor addition was added. To successfully create the sanctuary feel, this entire space was dedicated to its own exclusive floor alongside the master bedroom. Integrating the centrally located soaker tub required a significant footprint; this was considered in the initial design development. The custom glass counter from Quebec and the stainless substrate from a local artisan supported the contemporary design concept, along with the crisp, clean organic palette. The natural light transference was achieved with the charming, sizeable window and the incorporation of the exquisite chandelier further enhances the mood of this comforting retreat.

What are the special features and innovations?

  • Custom contemporary glass counter with stainless steel substrate
  • Oversized walk-in shower with 10 mm glass, dual shower heads, and intricate shower tile design
  • Standalone soaker tub
  • Heated flooring with large scale rectangular tile format
  • Ceiling speakers with integrated whole home sound system

View the amazing after photos of this case study:

If you have any questions specific to your bathroom Renovation or other Renovation inquiries please contact us at 403-720-8789 or fill out our free online assessment form.


Pinnacle Design Studio

PHONE: 403-720-8789 | FX: 403-720-6121

Location & Hours

Mon – Fri / 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Sat / 10am – 3pm (starting Sept 7)
Location: #4 – 10672 46th Street SE