From the August/September 2013 Issue:

Modern Serenity

    Writer: Meg Fox | Photographer: Peter Rymwid | Interior Designer: Tom Santarsiero, Ulrich Inc. |

Clean lines, marble surfaces and quality details lend quiet sophistication

Article Photo
enlarge | Custom walnut cabinets with a rich brown finish mix with honed Carrera marble surfaces. Designer Tom Santarsiero added architectural beams across the vaulted ceiling to bring a better sense of scale to the room without obstructing the skylight.
The original bathroom in Diane and Scott Pomerantz’s colonial-style home in Wyckoff—located in a 14-year-old development—did not suit their tastes. They described the room as boring and lacking in storage, among other deficiencies. Enter designer Tom Santarsiero of Ulrich Inc. in Ridgewood, who was charged with revamping the space in an “overall clean look” with custom cabinets, extra storage and spa-like touches.

Typical of homes in many developments, Santarsiero says, interior details don’t always reflect individual preferences. In this case the discerning homeowners— whose tastes gravitate toward transitional design— “wished to bring an understated elegance with quality and simplicity to the master bathroom,” he says.

While the dimensions were generous and open with a vaulted ceiling and skylight, the space was “stark and went unappreciated,” the designer recalls. His solution was to add architectural beams across the vaulted space to bring a better sense of scale to the room without obstructing the skylight. “This created an architectural frame that invites light and maintains the view to the outdoors,” he says.

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enlarge | Replacing a bulky bathtub with a more streamlined unit allowed room for a larger vanity and built-in storage niche. An armoire-like furniture cabinet, reflected in the mirror, also takes storage needs into account. Sconces and tubular bar pulls in polished nickel add modern flair.
Claiming Space
Replacing a large and seldom-used bathtub with a smaller one enabled Santarsiero to increase the size of the vanity to capture needed storage. He also carved out space between wall studs at the foot of the tub to add recessed shelving for towels and other essentials.
Custom walnut cabinets were designed with simple straight lines and a deep brown finish. “The richness of the dark cabinetry juxtaposed with the elegance of the Carrera marble countertops, wall and floors contribute to the room’s sophistication,” Santarsiero says. A tall armoire-style cabinet, designed to mimic freestanding furniture, occupies space behind the door for supplemental storage.

Behind the Scenes
A towel warmer—positioned at the opposite end of the tub from the recessed shelving—keeps towels toasty. And a peek inside the recessed medicine cabinets reveals some hidden features: stylish mirrored backs, easy-to-clean glass shelves and built-in electrical outlets to keep razors and power-hungry electric toothbrushes off the counter. Among the homeowners’ favorite features, however, are the marble accent wall behind the vanity and the sconces, which give the room a modern, elegant feel, they say.


design, Tom Santarsiero of Ulrich Inc. in Ridgewood; Draper DBS Inc. walnut cabinetry, through Ulrich Inc.; honed Carrera marble countertop and flooring, Stone Surfaces Inc. in East Rutherford; sconces, O’lampia Studio Inc. in New York City.

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