When it comes to public bathrooms in cities, unfortunately, functionality sometimes overshadows a bathroom design’s overall appeal – they never look too inviting. It’s fair to say, we typically set our expectations low – too low – before opting for communal bathrooms in the city’s public parks or transportation buildings. In Tokyo’s Sendagaya Station, however, one architect designed an exception. Suppose Design, a Tokyo-based architecture, and design firm, recently finished work on Sendagaya Station’s public bathroom and while its dark wood interiors and shining steel faucets might make you feel like you’ve accidentally walked into a hotel’s bathroom, you’ve still got a train to catch.
From the outside, Sendagaya Station’s public bathroom is a massive, yet unassuming concrete block that seems to float aboveground, reaching heights of 7.5 meters. Upon closer look, following nature’s call, the monolithic cube of concrete houses an elegant and comfortable space for travelers to use the bathroom and prep for their next train ride or freshen up before starting their stay in Tokyo. Inside, Accoya wood panels line the walls and embrace warm lighting for a relaxed and sensuous overall experience. Accoya wood, generally known for its impressive durability, equips pine wood with a finish that stands the test of time for upwards of 50 years, surpassing the longevity even in that of teakwood.
During the day, sun rays flow through the installment’s exposed roof and produce geometric beams of sunlight that bounce and ricochet off the gleaming brass accents and doorknobs, as well as the deep red wooden doors that will change color over time in accordance with exposure to the sun. Each stall is further equipped with an automatic toilet, baby-changing station, and a large control panel that offers different mechanical features for toilet use such as a front and rear bidet, two pressure options for flushing, as well as a sound barrier for privacy when it comes to nature’s more urgent matters.
Located in a city facility predominantly used for transportation and transition, the public bathroom as designed by Suppose Design for Sendagaya Station provides travelers with a spacious and welcoming respite, much needed after long travel days. If you’re coming from one city for a long trip in Japan, then Suppose Design’s public bathroom will welcome you well. Alternatively, if your trip to Sendagaya Station marks the end of a previous trip, this giant cube of concrete stands ready to welcome you home.
Designer: Suppose Design