Soaking tub and shower combination possible?

sgoldfieldFebruary 3, 2008

Hi, building a new house, only the main bathroom upstairs has room for a bathtub, but it also needs to double as a shower for more regular use. But I hate to give up the idea of a nicer soaking tub in the house. Has anyone seen or had experience with installing a soaking type size bathtub but in a more typical shower/tub combination with the faucets on the wall etc.? Any models you would recommend? Would we have to give up the shower doors and go with a shower curtain?

Thanks in advance!

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I am currently remodeling our master bath. We are installing a BainUltra Thalassa air tub into a tiled alcove with the faucets in the wall and a shower curtain. I suggest you go to their web site They have dozens of models for every conceivable application. The tub I selected is 72x 33. We chose not to install a separate stall shower, rather have some storage space and less to keep clean. Good luck.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 6:10AM
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Try to remember that most soaking tubs are deeper than standard tubs and getting in and out of a soaker tub just for a shower is a little more difficult. The most important thing I can tell you is if you are going to put your faucetry on the wall, the tub has to have a smooth straight edge. The tubs with any sort of lip or curviture will prevent you from having a sealed surface for the water to fall from the wall back into the tub, thus you would have water that would gather around the ledge. I agree with robaudio about the bain ultra tubs. Great manufacturer with many different options.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 1:39PM
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I am doing the same thing but haven't actually gotten to the point where I need to look for a specific tub. The tub needs to have an integral tile flange to allow it to be used for a shower application. It is a lip that prevents the water from pooling on a flat surface. If the tub does not have the tile flange, it should not be used for more than occasional showering, like in a guest bath.

I know the Kohler tea for two is pretty deep and also has an optional tile flange too. But it is cast iron. I am not sure what you are looking for. The Bain tubs had a lot of choices too but I can't remember a specific one.
Good luck with your search.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2008 at 8:52AM
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maax has some with the integral flange. i didn't go that route, but they are available. a couple things i considered when i was debating going that route - make sure the drain is on an end, not in the middle; and make sure at least the drain end of the tub is fairly vertical & square so you can get close to the shower spray. at least for me, i think i'd be stumbling and stubbing my toe trying to get close under the shower if i had a very curved tub end.


    Bookmark   February 4, 2008 at 3:41PM
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I know this thread is a couple of years old but after a little Googling I found that this question has not been answered very well anywhere. What I have discovered is that you are not going to be presented with many soaking tub/shower combination photos in magazines or books. They all tend to focus on 'idealized' situations where there is ample room for both a soaking tub and a detached shower. But combining a soaking tub & shower is very possible. Here are a couple of ways it can be done.

a. The free standing tub (e.g. clawfoot tub) with a wraparound shower curtain on a circular shower curtain rod. This is probably the simplest way to achieve a soaking tub/ standing shower combo. And if you do not car for the 'clawfoot' design there are many new free standing tubs that have bases other than clawed feet. Some are very elegant looking.

b. A 'drop in' tub with square corners where tiled walls can be brought right down to the lip of the tub so that there is are no flat, horizontal surfaces where standing water from a shower can accumulate. This might require bringing the wall a bit closer to the tub. No problem. It can be done. Say your space is 80 inches and your soaking tub is only 70 inches long. Bring one wall 10 inched closer to the end of the tub (or both walls 5 inches closer) and create cubby holes (shelves) for towels in the walled area.

c. Install a drop in soaking tub in the typical fashion, but include a circular shower curtain rod above it, and place the shower head above the center of the tub, or even hang it directly above the tub pointing straight down from the ceiling. This is actually the design I am considering. I may be a bit unconventional but who cares about convention if it is functional, serves your purposes and it installed in such a way that it looks visually appealing. If you place a cute ring to hold the shower curtain away from the tub when not in use and purchase a pretty looking circular shower curtain ring you could have yourself a real winning design. You could even place a horizontal beam covered with tile along the ceiling that would hide the shower curtain ring.

d. A wet design. Either a claw foot style tub or drop in tub can be coupled with an overhead shower with no shower curtain whatsoever if you tile and slope the floor toward a floor drain. If using a drop in tub, slightly angle the horizontal tiled surfaces surrounding the tub so there is no free standing water, so that any water runs off onto the floor and into the floor drain. There is no reason why this cannot be done. After all, the floors of showers are slightly sloped, tiled, horizontal surfaces!

Just use some creativity and do what you want. There are many ways to accomplish a soaking tub/standing shower combination! Of course you don't want to do anything too weird of it might affect your resale value. But if you use common sense you can definitely come up with a wonderful design. Don't let other people tell you what to do!!

Note: If stepping in and out of a tall soaking tub seems unpractical for daily use, considering building 2 or 3 tiled steps up to your tub. problem solved. For extra safety a chrome grap bar or two and be affixed to the walls. Never a bad idea in any shower or tub anyway!


    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 5:01PM
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Another very, very simple (and elegant) was to make a soaking tub/standing shower combo is to install either a fee standing tub (such as a claw foot tub) or a drop in tub (oval or rectangular) and then... hang a 360 degree oval shower curtain that you can raise and lower by pulling on a chord, just like a window blind. Problem solved.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2011 at 4:39PM
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MyDogBurt - thanks for the ideas. I too arrived at the circular shower curtain over freestanding tub idea as the best solution. Only thing is I wonder is if it's annoying to shower in a tub with a circular curtain (ie, more prone to touch the curtain sides). Any thoughts?

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 12:24AM
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