Everyone loves a hot bath
That gorgeous slow sinking, the silky water, the scent of luscious bath salts…….
Like me, you probably began the love affair with baths when you were two and had a rubber duck. I am very glad to be able to assure you that at eighty it is still a delight. Except that by then you will have added a gin and tonic, candles, a pillow, maybe underwater lights, power jets and a partner with a lovely big natural sponge who can help you find the soap. Or perhaps just a good book and soft music?
The delight of lying buried in foam is hard to beat. Aches and worries slide away as a gentle soporific haze of steam drifts around……..
It must be good for you. The Romans certainly thought so. It was an essential part of the good life of all citizens. A human right even? And certainly when you have been out walking.
Recently we stayed in a charming old coaching inn in the heart of the Lake District, log fires, beams, good food: dream kind of place you love to reach at the end of a tough day.
We did a few miles among hills and stunning scenery and then back to collapse. Off with the boots, on with the taps, in with the bath gel and grabbing a large mug of tea…a bit early for the gin..head for the scented steam.
Look at this, a modern bath, central taps, double ended comfort for two. Isnt it just gorgeous?
The first problem dawns.
Put down mug and consider mode of entry. Not being too good balancing on one foot, there will be a need to grab edge of bath….Humm,rounded and looking suspiciously slippery. However, can manage leg over. Ah, discover That standing with bent knees on slippery base will need two hands. Grab the other side. Rather a reach …. Courage and it is done, now half standing in bath. Feet think it feels lovely.
Attempt to lower oneself to sitting. Hands on shiny edges again, take weight, hope they don’t slide. Try to persuade knees to bend slowly. Now that is something you don’t have to think about when you are young. Just do it. Where’s the probem?
This is the problem . At eighty Knees develop rules of their own. Taking orders to let go slowly, descend a smooth bit at a time is no longer in their rule book. It’s more of an all or nothing scenario. Result major embarrassing tidal wave Partner has to mop up.
However safely in and luxury reigns. Except that the mug is on the sink and these round edges are hopeless for mug or gin balance. Can we be the only ones who like a drink at bathtub time!
Then the second problem dawns. How on earth am I going to get out? Can’t do push ups from that position. Cant do them anyway. Would it be OK to pull on a tap like that? Can I roll over? Too narrow. Partner tries to haul me up. Feet get part way under then slide…another tidal wave.
After 15 mins it looked as if calling the hotel porter was going to be it. However, will power won and we made it. Collapsed on the bed in glorious peals of laughter. Definitely gin time now.
But why are today’s Baths not Age Friendly? Is someone loosing a growing market here?
Friend after friend is telling me that they are having their bath taken out. They will miss it dreadfully, but it is just not safe. and they certainly dont want one of those awful blow up things or something with a weird gate. Just an elegant bath they can get in and out of.
A significant proportion of the adult population soon be over 60. They will have much of the Nations wealth and they are not old frumps. They like elegance and modern design.
Of course it is possible to design a gorgeous Age Friendly bath. It could be a fun one too, even a place for the gin.
How about this?
Yes, I know it is bottle green, but that was the height of fashion in the 70’s. “Real Retro” as our cleaners refer to it. But at least the designers had thought about the gin, the non slip base and how to get out. And it is wide enough to turn over. Anyone can enjoy it. So why don’t hotels have an elegant modern version? Unthinking Ageism?
Bathtime fun should be for everyone, and everywhere!
I would love to hear from some young designers with ideas for this new market. Are you out there?