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Bathroom Shower Panel UK and US Shopping Guide

Saturday, May 15th, 2010

Kohler shower panel overhead rain models; Vigo massage shower wall panels, Hudson Reed stainless steel shower panels; and for the UK….shower paneling for enclosures, walk in style glass shower panels; mosaic and other waterproof sheets for renovating walls; Mermaid wall panel system – where to shop online for power shower systems in the United States and for shower enclosure panelling in the UK – at Home Walk In Showers we have the information you need to plan and build your unique bathroom wherever you live…from new York to London…and anywhere between.

What is a Shower Panel?

It depends. Here are the three main products that the term describes:

  1. A type of contemporary shower console that often has the capability to offer a variety of built-in extras that may include massage via adjustable jets, and/or a rainfall showerhead, as well as a hand held shower spray all from one central unit. The panel, usually a flat, sleek, maintenance-free stainless steel wall-mounted apparatus, will feature things like a thermostatic mixing valve for temperature control, versatile swiveling nozzles, simultaneous pulsating massage jets and rain-style shower settings, as well as flexible hoses that are part of a complete self-contained center that can be easily installed in a shower area with brackets. These are sold worldwide by some of the biggest shower manufacturers like Kohler, Hudson Reed and others, and although they have gained most popularity in the United States, there are online distributors who ship to many destinations.
  2. A shower wall panel or the term “shower paneling” will likely refer to a waterproof plywood or laminated wood surface that is decorative and can be placed on the sides and back of a shower area instead of resurfacing the walls with stucco, paint, tile or other materials. They may mimic the look of tile, mosaics, stone, or simply be a smooth surface that’s easy to clean and seals off moisture from entering corners and edges. An example would be the beautiful waterproof wall panel systems offered by a UK company called Mermaid. Their panels can be used to create an enclosure that can get totally wet, as in a shower, or can be used to decorate and cover the entire wall surface of a bathroom.

    They may be used in small cubical showers in flats, or large elegant bathrooms. Another online shop that has a huge selection of panel colors, styles and textures is called The Bathroom Marquee. It seems they offer almost every color, texture and faux stone or tile design you might have in mind. Using wall paneling for shower or bath areas is most popular in the UK, although there it’s also available in the US.

  3. The term glass shower panel may be something completely different altogether. For example when building a walk in shower area or a wetroom, a panel of glass may be used to separate the otherwise open showering area from the rest of the bathroom. In both the UK and the US, glass doors and glass panels are sold, however in the UK they often referred to as bespoke shower doors or panels and in the US they are custom sheets of glass or simply glass panels. The shower panel UK residents can purchase easily online, may be found through a company called WD Bathrooms. They offer the Cascade walk in panel that can be used in a wet room or walkin shower design that you can customize to your specific needs.

    In the US, you can order the Kohler designs, which are panels of glass that create a square, round or curved style enclosure. One is called the Focal Framed Crystal Clear Custom Bypass Shower Door, which in fact is made up of several panels of glass. The entire unit, with all the panels like in the image we present, costs over $1,000, but can be ordered online through efaucets and there’s no extra shipping charges on orders within the US.

    Now that it’s clear what these three items are, it should make searching for exactly what you need easier. However, it appears that the panels most searched for are the high-tech console units that give massage and rainfall showers, so we offer….

A Brief Shower Panel Review For Kohler, Hudson Reed and Vigo Product Lines

  1. Kohler – The newest Kohler shower panel is unique because it is not a wall mounted unit but a ceiling mounted rainfall shower. It’s actually called the WaterTile® and is a square plaque, or panel that causes it to rain over your head. Sounds fun! It may look as if it just dumps water on you, but in fact it has a complete built-in system of 4 adjustable nozzles with twenty-two spayheads. This contemporary means of getting rained on isn’t cheap, in fact the system starts at over $670. If the basic polished chrome finish doesn’t match your décor, then you can spend a little more and get whatever finish you desire, like the polished or brushed nickel design for over $970 (or for a similar price you can also order the brushed bronze, however, the polished gold tile we can only assume is so expensive Kohler won’t tell us how much it costs, so you’ll have to contact an authorized dealer, although the French gold model costs just $905. Anyway, it’s not a cheap option, but it’s very chic!
  2. Hudson Reed – For about $895, you can get the Hudson Reed design, which is a unit that is wall mounted, called the Lustre Shower Panel. It comes with everything except a beautiful woman to scrub your back, but you don’t need a shower companion because the system comes with six body jets to scrub and massage, not just your back, but all over.

    The showers panel design is sleek and slimline but has a bit of teak wood elegance mixed with the durable stainless steel unit. It has lots of other features like easy clean nozzles and anti scald control. There’s one thing that this design doesn’t offer, and that is: you can’t use the fixed showerhead mode while simultaneously using the body jets. You have to choose one or the other. There are models that allow both if that’s an important feature. The Hudson Reed thermostatic shower panel that’s a tower system and costs just over $700, allows simultaneous jets and shower functions.

  3. Vigo – For under $400 you can get a high-tech Vigo Shower massage panel that has received rave reviews by satisfied customers. In part the price makes people happy with their purchase, since it can retail for as little $360 through places like Surplus Decor, but it’s also a high performance model. It’s aluminum, lightweight, yet very durable and resistant to corrosion. It has 6 jets, thermostatic control, adjustable showerhead, and also can be installed in conjunction with a bathtub or even a whirlpool. The controls are brass with a chrome finish and it includes a no-fog mirror so you can watch yourself shower.
  4. If you’re creating a personalized walk in shower or wet room, in the US or the UK, and need more ideas on how to incorporate showerheads, power showers, electric shower devices, choosing an enclosure, selecting some unusual extras like copper sinks or a stone vessel basin, or if you want to know where to buy unique vanity mirrors, heated towel bars or bathroom sets to decorate, or even if you just want to get more use out of your bathroom by organizing with better bathroom storage solutions, please continue exploring the related topics in this site. At Home Walk In Showers we’re here to help you plan how to get wet in style and come out refreshed.