Commercial washrooms are considered an important aspect of the total building experience, especially in image-conscious establishments such as hotels, restaurants and shopping malls. However, designing a commercial washroom the conventional way with the involvement of multiple trades and suppliers is a time-consuming and tedious process that has a number of inefficiencies.

Traditional commercial washroom design is a time- and cost-intensive process with too many dependencies on multiple agencies resulting in compromised quality. Additionally, budget constraints and sustainability goals combined with the demand for high-end fixtures that increase operational convenience and hygiene standards can turn a modern commercial washroom project into a major design challenge.

The recent trend towards modular design elements in commercial projects addresses all the inefficiencies of conventional design-and-construct processes by providing a practical solution that reduces labour and material costs as well as construction times without compromising build quality. Modular design practices result in less debris and wastage onsite while the controlled manufacturing environment offsite ensures consistent quality.

Designers of commercial washrooms are increasingly showing a preference for prefabricated bathroom elements, which when combined with modular construction techniques address the time, cost and quality challenges of modern design. For instance, intelligent fixtures based on hands-free operation using infrared sensors can address all hygiene concerns while improving user experience in public washrooms. Modular design also simplifies cleaning, maintenance and repairs.

Modular mirror cabinet systems such as the Dolphin ALAVO can be specified for commercial bathrooms to meet aesthetic and functional requirements as well as user expectations of convenience and hygiene.

Dolphin ALAVO modular washroom system

A behind-mirror modular system ideal for commercial bathroom applications, the Dolphin ALAVO has been created with inputs from architects, designers, contractors and facilities staff. The integrated design of the ALAVO combines ‘no touch’ infrared sensor taps, foam soap systems and high speed low energy hand dryers, enabling the user to wash, soap and dry in one position. ALAVO’s plug-and-play design minimises the time associated with installation and ongoing maintenance of the washroom.

Key ALAVO elements include an electrical consumer panel, circulating hot water loop, infrared sensor taps, high speed hand dryer, automatic foam soap dispenser, thermostatic mixing valves (TMV), LED lighting, hot and cold water supply inlet, foam soap tank and paper towel dispenser, with all or any combination of these elements pre-fitted into cabinet modules. Pre-hung opening mirrors are mounted to the top of these modules, which fasten together and to the supporting wall structure. A wide choice of mirror widths allows designers to cater to washroom walls of any size. The mirror flaps can be quickly unlocked, ensuring all services are fully accessible for future maintenance.

Design highlights of the ALAVO modular washroom system include WELS rated infrared sensor tap delivering water savings of up to 65 per cent along with hygiene and ease of use; sensor-operated automatic foam soap dispensers dispensing a pre-measured quantity of foam soap; 7-litre foam soap tank good for 17,500 hand washes with a warning light at 2 litres for replenishment; high velocity hand dryers that can dry hands in 13 seconds, using 70 per cent less energy than conventional systems; and paper towel dispensers.

The factory assembled system comes with all specified fittings tested and installed, allowing site installation and operation in a few simple steps.

The Dolphin ALAVO modular system was specified as an integral element of Adelaide Airport’s recent wash room refurbishment. Working with designer Katherine Rawlings and contractor Sarah constructions, Dolphin Wash Room Solutions was able to deliver a successful and easy installation of the ALAVO system, becoming an integral part of the Airport’s upgrade, and greatly improving user experience for visitors to the Airport.

For more information download the whitepaper Simplifying commercial washroom design with modular mirror cabinet systems