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Soaking room is the heart of this master suite.

Think beyond the bathroom, to the restful, contemplative feeling that can can come over you as you soak away tensions in a hot tub. That meditative, Zen-inspired mood was the goal of Berkeley architect Charles Debbas when he remodeled the dark lower floor of a two-story hillside house into a light-filled master suite and guest room-office. At the core of his design is a skylighted soaking room in a widened part of the hallway linking the master bedroom and guest room.

Debbas designed the soaking room to evoke typical metaphors called on by the Japanese in their reverence for nature. The tub area resembles a curvilinear landscape: black granite tops the raised tub platform, and a vertical strip of granite tops the raised tub platform, and a vertical strip of granite links it to the slate-tile floor, creating an abstraction of two small forest pools linked by a cascade. The soaking tub is set against a metaphoric hill at the rear of the space. Paradoxically, there, in the most enclosed part of the room, one gets a broad view of the tree-covered hillside beyond a window wall that's actually an operable overhead door; it rolls up to merge soaking room and surrounding nature.
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Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Feb 1, 1992
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