Bathroom in the kitchen?

curlyjbsJanuary 17, 2008

Hi I posted on the bathroom forum but maybe this question belongs here.

We are in the process of an addition/remodel and want to put a powder room in the kitchen. Is this odd? Or wrong?



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Do you mean you want to include a powder room off of the kitchen as part of the addition/remodel or do you mean ... fridge, stove, baking counter, sink, toilet ???

The first would be excellent and done all the time. The other, not so much. Personally, I like to ensure that operations supporting the requirements of my different orifices are also spatially well segregated.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 10:55AM
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i'm assuming you want to put a powder room OFF the kitchen? is that what you mean? otherwise i have to assume you want to just stick a toilet in the middle of the kitchen itself ...and i'd rather not. i've put powder rooms right off the kitchen in two houses. in the new house the PR will be situated right off the mudroom and the kitchen. why would this be odd, or wrong? whatever works for you!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 10:55AM
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A lot of times you have no choice due to space constraints! If you don't have a powder room now and have the option of adding one in your kitchen addition, I'd say it's definitely better than not having one at all.

Our powder room is at the end of the kitchen, but the door opens off a little hallway instead of opening right off the kitchen. To me, this makes a big difference in privacy compared to some of our neighbors where the bathroom door is directly next to the kitchen table.

In the photo below, the powder room door is to the left of the blackboard at the end of the hall, past the breakfast nook:

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 10:59AM
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Our main objective when we remodeld our kitchen was to hide the bathroom that was right off our kitchen. When we were in the kitchen, if the bathroom door was left open you had a clear view of the john. We got very tired of seeing that plus if someone was in there and did the big one hmmm not so nice if you know what I mean. Our archetect was able to extend one of our walls to create a little hall just for the bathroom. We love it!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 11:13AM
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If it's OFF THE KITCHEN, that's fine, but if it's in the kitchen with a door from the kitchen leading directly into the bathroom, I wouldn't do it. That's just not right!

Kitchenchoas hit the nail on the nail as to why it shouldn't be done.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 11:20AM
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I'd agree with the above posters: If the plan ends up with a door leading directly from the powder room into the kitchen, then Ewww, rework the plan until that it not the case.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 11:55AM
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I struggled with this issue also when figuring out my remodeling plan. I have a 100 year old 1100 sq ft Victorian cottage with one small bathroom, which is positioned between two bedrooms.

I managed to find space for a 4.5'x4' powder room, in a new "hallway" between the kitchen and dining/living/multipurpose room. I am happy with this arrangement, the powder room opens into a hallway rather than either the kitchen or dining room. It faces a new closet/pantry spillover across the hallway, so you'll never be able to see the toilet from the kitchen or dining room. I have lots of folks here on the GW kitchen forum to thank for helping me figure this out. While not completely ideal, it was the best solution for my very constrained space.

It's not finished yet but the framing, plumbing and electrical is done, drywall should be within the next week.

Looking through the dining room, kitchen will be at the far end, and you can see the new closet framing between the dining room and kitchen. The new powder room is directly across from that closet.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 12:03PM
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I have a 1/2 bath in the kitchen. The purpose of it is because I live in the country, on a large piece of property and wanted a "mudroom" so I don't have to track all thru the house to reach a bathroom. Really is handy and I'm glad I did it because dirty shoes on the ceramic tile of the kitchen is no problem, but tracking over carpet WOULD be. I know another person with the same setup because they are also in the country. You don't want to have to remove shoes just to get to a bathroom. So it depends on your intentions for the use of the room, and if you have another guest bath, I guess.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 12:30PM
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While ours is not in the kitchen, it is nearby and I didn't want to hear noises or smell things....

We put in a ventilation fan. There are different noise level fans and I chose one that makes a little noise. The fan is also hooked up to main light switch. We also put some extra insulation/soundproofing into the walls as the room was being built.


    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 12:34PM
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A previous owner expanded the pantry cabinet and installed a sink and yeah, it's in the kitchen.

If we ever get the funds to do my dream remodel the bathroom will open into the mudroom (which we don't have yet). It's a privacy and aesthetics issue - but with 5 grandchildren under the age of 10 that visit often, I'm glad we have the additional bathroom regardless of where it is.

If you can avoid having the door open directly into the kitchen or diningroom you'll be happier.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 1:16PM
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bklyn2pok, Are you saying you store food in your powder room? Seriously?

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 1:37PM
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We ahve the same issue in our currentlayout. The powder room is in the kitchen and you can see in when sitting at the kitchen table. Yuck. In our current design, we are adding a mudroom and the powder room will be off the mudroom. A bit inconvenient have to go in to the mudroom to go in to the powder room, but much better than what we have now. I also think that it will e great in the summer when the kids are playing in the yard. If they have to use the bathroom, they will just go through the mudroom and not have to come in the kitchen

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 1:42PM
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For many reasons, bathrooms/powder rooms are OFTEN situated next to/off of a kitchen. Probably for plumbing and venting issues, etc.

As green-zeus mentioned, if you're coming from outside through your kitchen, often it's super convenient to have a bathroom close by. Our upstairs main bath/guest bath is at the end of the house furthest from our kitchen, and sliding door entrance. As we love to hot-tub, we are actually going to set up our basement bathroom as the go-to one from outside. It shares a wall with the downstairs kitchen, but you actually have to go through kitchen, cut through family room into hallway and then BR, toilet is not visible from anywhere.

So, if possible, I would try and rearrange doors/pathways so that you DON"T walk in directly from kitchen into bath, and at the bare minimum, you DON"T want to see the toilet if the door is open.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 2:00PM
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sarschlos - sorry I wasn't clear. The original pantry was converted into a bathroom and no longer used as a pantry. No food storage in the former pantry - at least not since we've owned the house - can't speak for previous owners.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 2:57PM
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Where I live building codes require that there be two doors between a kitchen and a toilet. That is, exit kitchen door into hall-mudroom-den-laundry, take a step, enter powder room door.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 3:05PM
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If you think about it, having a toilet right next to the oven and stove would be perfect. If you need to go to the bathroom at any time, it wouldn't be a problem because you could still check out the roast at the same time.

And sorry, I have nothing constructive to add to this conversation. :)

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 3:25PM
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LOL!!! Thanks everyone. The actual room will be off the kitchen but still close enough to be considered in...if that makes sense. The door open or closed will not be visable from any dining areas or most anywhere in the kitchen.

Thanks for a good laugh....I needed it! This planning and changing and planning and changing is killing me!


    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 4:14PM
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Our kitchen remodel includes a bathroom off the kitchen. You enter from the kitchen but go through a small laundry room and then another door into the bathroom. I will likely put in extra insulation as well but I have seen this set up before and think it is just fine.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 5:16PM
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bklyn2pok -- Oh, that's a relief. had me worried someone should be contating the health authorities over there... lol.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 5:18PM
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We were at a Christmas party - and I was looking around the lovely kitchen, really enjoying the space and what they had done with it - until.... someone had to use the bathroom and was directed to it - yep, right IN the kitchen -
I just think it is an all around bad idea -

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 9:04PM
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DH lived in a tiny closet of a duplex during law school.

"How tiny was it?"

He could be 'seated' and tend the stove OR do dishes at the same time.

NO joke.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 9:18PM
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Ours is so small you can sit and wash your hands at the same time - no kidding!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 10:35PM
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We live in a small center-hall colonial where somewhere along the line the space under the stairs was converted into a little half-bath. The kitchen is situated on the same side of the staircase as the bathroom door, so yes, it opens right into/off the kitchen. It's very convenient but sometimes I wonder what my guests think of this placement. In the old days you had to go upstairs to reach the only bathroom in the house.

A long rectangular structure was added out the back center of the house and it forms a pantry that leads to a laundry room and the rest of the space is a carport. I wonder if we should make the half-bath a pantry and re-configure the laundry room space to include a nice downstairs bath or half-bath.

Oh no, not another remodeling project!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 11:27PM
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Some of these descriptions are reminding me of the Seinfeld episode where Kramer has a garbage disposal installed in the drain of his shower so that he can wash his veggies while he showers. Ewww.

Also I just remembered a new professor in my wife's department who rented an apartment when he started that had a powder room door right between the kitchen table and a run of cabinets along the wall. And the worst of it is that it was a door with horizontal louvered slats (I guess for ventilation)

    Bookmark   January 18, 2008 at 10:44AM
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Ha! I just remembered a studio apartment I stayed in one summer only had a sink in the bathroom, so that's where I did dishes and washed veggies. Did A LOT of eating out that summer...

Our new/old house has a louvered door on the master, which is right off of the living room. It's definitely on the list for replacement. lol.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2008 at 5:05PM
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in a lot of older houses you'll find storage IN the bathroom...I know I can think of 2 off the top of my head, my sil's former bath and a friends. Both were off the kitchen and they also stored bulk food items there. I never thought anything of it really. *shrug* I just thought, old house, tight spaces, you make due. Some of us don't have brandy new houses lol.

all that said, we knew someone who's bathroom was split in two - on one side was the shower stall - off the living room and then the bathroom, toilet and sink were off the kitchen. THAT was weird...

    Bookmark   January 18, 2008 at 5:23PM
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My prior home had a 1/2 bath in the kitchen. I didn't mind it. if you left the door open, you could see the TV on the kitchen counter. :o)

    Bookmark   January 18, 2008 at 5:50PM
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My BIL (very old house) and a friend (brand new house) have powder rooms that attach at the end of their large kitchens. It's convenient but seems wierd to me.

Just last weekend we were at a dinner gathering at my friend's house. A group of us were standing in the kitchen talking. Another guest excused herself and went into the bathroom not 3 feet behind us.

Inheriting this situation is one thing, having it done purposely in a new house is personal preference.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2008 at 6:04AM
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dian hit the nail on the head here "Inheriting this situation is one thing, having it done purposely in a new house is personal preference"

I would only add - rather than 'Personal preferance" - lack of proper design, and common sense -
All too often - we see lovely renovations w/a flair of "what were they thinking w/that?" - it's a statement of well we needed x and didn't have room so we just stuck it there !

    Bookmark   January 19, 2008 at 10:06AM
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Actually, it's somewhat common in the older houses in my neighborhood. A lot have the half-bath directly off the kitchen or off the dining room which is off the kitchen, and most of the houses have the main bath upstairs with the bedrooms. I lucked out in that mine is in the short hall between the kitchen and LR so at least the door doesn't face the kitchen. In other houses, yeah, you're looking right at the toilet when the door opens.

I feel like the other poster - if you inherited it, deal with it because it's convenient to have that bathroom downstairs, but I wouldn't plan a new construction that way.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2008 at 11:00AM
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I am ROTFL at this thread. Our main floor bath was right across from the kitchen. It was separated from the kitchen by a fence and a narrow hallway but all in an open design (if you have no walls, how about separating the rooms with fences!!?) All noises and smells could be experienced in the kitchen. The biggest problem was when the phone rang in the kitchen -it took a mighty leap over the fence to get there. All that is history now. We took that bath, a half bath and a small pantry and made an alcove (closed off from the kitchen with a pocket door) that contains the door to the new bathroom (also created from this space), a closet with a stacked washer/dryer and another pocket door into the office (the old entrance was on another side of this room).
This is so much better!

    Bookmark   January 19, 2008 at 2:41PM
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I use to have a town house that had a half bath in the kitchen. There was no other place to put a half bath on this floor, but I would have moved the door, if I had thought about it, so that you could not see into the bath at standing/sitting in the kitchen. Overall, I didn't like it and would never do it again.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2008 at 3:08PM
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This is akin to powder rooms which open to a living room. Even new houses have this and eludes me. I do not want to see a toilet. The new house next door has theirs opening into the great room which includes the kitchen. It is situated at the far end of the area, but the toilet is situated such that it is always in view. This could have easily been changed by having the door open into the laundry/mud room. Of course it would mean visitors going into the laundry to get there. But certainly better than viewing all from a kitchen or living area. If you can change the entry, I think it would be a far better arrangement.

And, me too, love the comments.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2008 at 10:39AM
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Who had posted a picture with the drop dead gorgeous granite island & the powder room in the distance??
They had received a comment about their island lights & I'm interested in those. Silly me should of made a note of them when I saw them.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2008 at 10:46AM
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"I like to ensure that operations supporting the requirements of my different orifices are also spatially well segregated. "

OMG mindstorm! I'm laughing so hard that I spewed red wine all over my POS laptop (if only it would die).

btw, you'll be amused to know that the label of said wine is "Royal B**tch" Christms gift from the bro. You think he's trying to tell me something???


P.S. On topic: if it's off the kitchen, it's fine. I just don't think you want to be able to get to it from insiade the kitchen itself. But hey, that's me.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2008 at 1:49PM
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No joke: When my sister's husband was in the miltary in germany a friend had an apartment that had the toilet IN the kitchen. Talking about nightmares--yuck! "Could you please discontinue flambeeing the shrimp bisque, I need to use the facilities." New product line: combination paper towel.toilet paper holders. talking about saving money by keeping your plumbing needs close together.

Seriously, we have two baths on the first floor in the house we'll be starting later this year. One is a full bath off the media room (on the left side of the foyer; on the right is an aviary) which makes the media room a potential first floor bedroom if necessary in the future, and one off a short hall between the DR and kitchen. There's simply no other place to put it, and it doubles as a safety porch for getting into the aviary from the house. Seeing the photo of that gorgeous kitchen I realize I can start agomizing over it. Thank you! On to the many other things to figure out ;)

    Bookmark   January 24, 2008 at 3:35PM
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I couldn't imagine preparing a gourmet meal, and being distracted as the offending ruminants from someone dropping a duece makes its way through the kitchen, that's just wrong.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2008 at 4:10PM
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