By melissa_franko

Spa Designs Around the World

Ahhh, who doesn’t like a day at the spa? While spas offer patrons the chance to escape and experience utter bliss with a utopia-like atmosphere, aesthetically, spas offer more than basic relaxation and practicality. In fact, a spa design concept begins and ends with the notion of promoting general well-being.

The best spa designs around the world enhance and benefit physical, emotional and mental states. But how exactly can a spa design concept accomplish such a feat?

A Mainstream Industry Rooted in Culture

When taking a look at current trends in spas designs around the world, it helps to view design concepts from a historical perspective.

Here’s a fun fact: The word “spa” is actually an acronym from the Latin phrase ‘Salus per Aquam,’ which means ‘Health from Water.’

Historically, spas were naturally forming water springs that were used to aid in the healing process. Some of the oldest references of spas are found to be dated back to 370 B.C. In all that time, spas have not lost their fundamental purpose of promoting holistic medicine and wellbeing.

Fast forward 2000 years, spas are at the forefront of the holistic health and wellness movement. And spa design concepts seem to embody the assertion that nature heals.

Spa Designs Around the World

If spas are developed as wellness centers, architecture and design also enhance this setting through the use of clean lines, warm color palettes, and geometrical shapes often found in nature. Some of the most notable designs in the spa industry indicate just how entrenched ‘natural healing’ concepts have been incorporated.

In order for the spa guest to have an instant feeling of relaxation, they need to step into a harmonious space. In linking all senses, décor, color, sounds and scents each play their own role in telling the story of the spa and help to set the ambiance and experience.

From spa design concepts that enhance their natural environment to quiet havens in bustling cities, these designs are some of the most prolific within the spa industry.


Arclin TFL’s Cognac and Alabama Cherry look modern and clean when paired with white.

Victorian Architecture

Paying homage to ancient Rome and even taking elements from the ancient Egyptians, Victorian Architecture is both grand and eclectic. Its use for practicality is minimal, favoring beauty instead. For spas, elements of wood and stone are often used. Ancient Roman baths are considered the cornerstone of these spa settings. Asymmetrical lines and ornate accents are emphasized to promote grandeur while still remaining humble in other aspects.

Taking a look at St. Pancras Spa at the Renaissance Hotel in London, these design concepts are incorporated and anything but subtle. For color, a peacock theme and colored accents establish notions and motifs of eternal life and rejuvenation.

Nature as Inspiration

Other spa design concepts utilize nature as continued inspiration. In mimicking the environment from which they derived, these spas exemplify elements of their surroundings and usually remain minimalistic. Focal points are live plants, enhancing the spas restorative journey. In addition, warm woods and neutral linens are used. Bamboo, similarly, sets a tone for Eastern-inspired spa designs.

The Aman Spa located in Canyon Point, Utah is a beautiful design inspired by its natural surroundings. The region’s ancient Navajo landscapes stay firmly in place as the focal point of the spa design concept. The architecture is bold, albeit simplistic, and properly juxtaposes the smooth curves of the background while upholding the elegance of modern spas.

Modern & Worldly Elements

Spa Design with Calm Horizon by Arclin TFL
This eclectic, modern spa design can be replicated with Arclin TFL’s rustic weathered Calm Horizon, which has great fidelity and color. See Calm Horizon here. HR Maple is also a classic choice that allows design elements, like these teal built-ins, to pop.


Uniquely designed spaces often incorporate a multitude of design concepts. Some select from modern or contemporary details, such as geometric lines, neutral tones, and bold pieces. Worldly aesthetics can include inspiration from various areas around the globe or region-specific accents. For instance, beach themes can be inspired by Thailand and the Asia Pacific, Caribbean roots or South American heritage.

Galgorm Resort & Spa located in Ballymena, Northern Ireland is a breathtaking spa design combining elements of various design aesthetics. Outwardly facing, dark woods and exposed weather bricks make up much of the façade. Inside, comfortable hanging pod chairs and pendant lights, plus adornments of vibrant colors, create an uplifting atmosphere while still remaining comforting and relaxing.

Arclin Design for Natural Accents

Arclin’s decorative TFL overlays are the perfect backdrop or complement to many furniture choices or design highlights in a spa environment. Why TFL? Our environmentally-friendly products provide easy maintenance that makes them at home in any space and our broad range of palettes ensures TFL fits beautifully in luxury-minded designs. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help with upcoming spa designs.

NeoCon Surface Trends 2018

NeoCon, one of the industry’s leading commercial design industry trade shows, always feeds our need for new trends in the colorful and ever-changing landscape of commercial interiors design. Here’s what caught our decorative surfaces-geek eye at the show last month:

Contrast in greys.

As we’ve seen in previous years, grey tones continue their prominence in the world of case goods. What’s new? Warmth and contrast — and lots of it! Office spaces featured dark panels with high accent colorations; and many of the greys (lineal and cathedral) now show a nuanced incorporation of warmth married with a lush taupe-ish tone.

Evolution in structure.

Everywhere we looked, tables and desktops featured more robust detailing and elegant cathedral structures. Lineal structures are still part of the design palette, but nowhere as prominent as we’ve seen in previous years. From accent walls to desktops, tables to flooring, sweeping cathedrals adorned every corner of the NeoCon showrooms this year.

Raw Woods.

We’ve seen this trend grow in more industrial-looking spaces, but the creativity of application within a more traditional office space was one of our favorite application trends this year. Plywood, OSB, fresh cut real woods — unstained with only a sealant. Raw plywood edgebanding on tables and desktops. OSB and plywood accent walls. The depth of structure and movement of the raw wood look brings a renewed sense of elegance to what was once thought of as incomplete design.

Mixed materials.

A growing trend that continues to evolve — showcased not only with the combination of stone and woodgrain, but expanded to the use of different woodgrains and colorations together in one piece. We’re seeing an expanded contrast and versatility to traditional woodgrain applications.

Rustic evolution.

Traditional rustics have evolved into a more elegant, natural execution. With added sophistication, the new rustics are more about realism than simply the appearance cracks and knots — it’s about rich natural luxury that creates a picturesque palette for a variety of interiors.

5 Building Materials for Eco-Friendly Interiors

5 Eco-Friendly Building Materials - Arclin TFL

Over the last decade, architecture and interior design have embraced more natural alternatives. And it is no surprise, when you consider that sustainability is an attractive move for both the planet and profit.

Architect Magazine reported in October that buildings consume about 40% of the energy in the U.S. annually. In addition, they are responsible for emitting nearly half of the carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. The 2017 article, “The Climate Is Changing. So Must Architecture,” calls for architects to use more sustainable materials that consume far fewer resources.

Consumers want healthier materials in their spaces that are kinder to our natural resources. Architects and interior designers need to seek out solutions such as designing LEED certified buildings, which can drop carbon dioxide emissions by more than 30% while reducing water and energy consumption.

While companies like Arclin are always developing innovative eco-friendly materials, here are five options to consider today when designing an eco-friendly interior.

Coco Tiles

Coco tiles are a natural alternative for flooring, backsplashes, walls, etc. Made from reclaimed coconut shells, this product reduces waste, while bringing a hint of nature into offices, restaurants, health care facilities and hotels. Kirei, a company focused on creating eco-friendly products, has mastered the art of the coco tile.


Bamboo has traditionally been used for decorating, but is now making a name for itself as an alternative building material. Using bamboo as flooring can be beneficial in more ways than one. Bamboo is water-resistant, and won’t stain like traditional hardwood flooring that swells when water is trapped inside a panel. And, bamboo flooring can be extremely durable depending on how it is manufactured, especially if it is strand woven. You can expect easy maintenance if you choose bamboo flooring.

Reclaimed Wood

Reclaimed wood can be used for flooring, furniture, ceiling beams, and so much more. Using reclaimed wood in interior design is an eco-friendly way to add character to any room. The color palettes affiliated with reclaimed wood are limitless. It can add a tropical atmosphere to a restaurant or a feeling of comfort to a healthcare facility. Reclaimed wood is an eco-friendly alternative to cutting down living trees for building materials. You can rest easy knowing that your interior design isn’t harming the environment.


Cork is a versatile material that can be used all over your home or in commercial spaces. Adding a sheet of cork to an office wall can offer sustainability, because the extraction process for cork does not harm the tree it is taken from and the bark it is made from replenishes every 9 years. It also adds convenience and utility to the room. Additionally, cork provides excellent insulation for both temperature and acoustics control. This cost-effective material has also been used for flooring, as its cushion-like surface is easy to stand on for long periods of time.


Our favorite green product of all is TFL — a cost-effective alternative to the other surface options on the market. When considering the use TFL in your next design project, remember that these products are versatile and work across a variety of applications and industries. With advanced printing technologies, these decorative overlays enable us to mimic the design properties of real wood, but it is made with papers derived from tree fibers grown on controlled, fast-growing plantations. Just take a look at designs like Charles Bridge to see what we mean!