5 minutes with: interior designer Cristina Celestino

Having recently made a bold collaborative statement with Kaldewei at Fuorisalone in Milan, we caught up with designer Cristina Celestino to ask her about the shift from wearable to washable design, bathroom trends, and that crucial debate of bath vs shower…

designer Cristina Celestino discusses her collaboration with Kaldewei

At this year’s Fuorisalone in Milan, Kaldewei celebrated the luxurious and intimate beauty of bathroom culture. The brand teamed up with Vogue Germany for the jointly presented ‘Bathscape’, an installation, designed by Milan designer Cristina Celestino, founder of Attico Design. A private spa, a glamorous relaxation room and an intimate retreat for very personal ‘me time’ moments –today’s bathroom has so many facets, and Celestino built on these concepts in her installation.

For the Milanese designer, the project was a sculptural research into the multifaceted aspects of bathroom furnishings, from aesthetic questions about sensual perception and the luxury of relaxation to aspects of sustainability and resource conservation. ‘Bathscape’ explored how the choices we make in the bathroom can transform these spaces into a very personal home spa. What makes the modern bathroom an oasis where you can recharge your batteries and relax? And how important are ecological and social aspects? Against the backdrop of these complex questions, ‘Bathscape’ created the basis for a highly topical dialogue whilst presents exciting ways to approach contemporary, luxurious bathroom design.

Hotel Designs: Historically you have worked with some of the great fashion houses such as Fendi and Sergio Rossi, so did it come as a surprise to be asked to work with Vogue Germany on a project that included sanitaryware?

Cristina Celestino: I was pleasantly surprised when Vogue got in touch with us: I knew the products of Kaldewei for their intrinsic sustainable quality and aesthetic rigour and Vogue has always been an editorial reference for tips in the field of fashion, with a contemporary look. The three-way collaboration between Kaldewei/Vogue/Celestino has produced a cultured and innovative setting, mixing different skills and cultural aspects.

HD: Kaldewei are one of the leading advocates for sustainability, all their products are 100 per cent recyclable, are you finding that many clients now prefer a sustainable option?

CC: There is a growing awareness of people who choose to use materials, objects and furnishings while respecting ethical and sustainable codes. Having the ability to recycle objects is crucial. Kaldewei has been doing this for a long time and has proven itself as a world leader.

HD: Colour is a key trend in bathrooms now, how do you feel about colour in the bathroom, is this something that you are happy to see extending into sanitaryware?

CC: Colour is part of our interpretation of the world, so inextricably linked to it. We have long been accustomed to identifying sanitary ware with white colour, but this is for obvious reasons purely related to the history of hygiene. Today we can dare new associations, new approaches, under the banner of a contemporary vision of new habits and needs of man/woman.

HD: Do you prefer white bathtubs, washbasins and shower trays or would you mix and match?

I freely move between white and colour, with no specific preferences. The colour is chosen according to the project, the place and the customer and the result differs every time.

HD: How will this ‘mega trend’ around wellness evolve in years to come, in your opinion?

CC: The intimate space of the bathroom immediately connects us to a desire to return to ourselves, to time itself, to our well-being care. The bathroom, traditionally relegated to ‘lower function’ is acquiring more and more importance and value, just like other living areas. I imagine articulated spaces, such as the Milan exhibition, where objects assume an identity and a symbolic role, at the same time fluid and functional.

HD: Final question. Are you a long soak in a bathtub person or do you prefer the speed and revitalising effect of a hot shower?

CC: I get up very early in the morning and a vigorous and refreshing shower after the night is crucial to start the day off right!

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Main image credit: Kaldewei