Monday, 9 May 2011

Toilets continued, and kitchen faucets

I made that much-need trip to Home Depot over the weekend to reality check prices.  I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the Toto Promenade Suite is very reasonably priced for what's out there, if you set aside the dirt cheap toilets and sinks that look it.  So those are a go for the tenants' units and I'll place that order through one of the local plumbing showrooms when my saleswoman returns to work tomorrow.

I did find a new toilet that I like a lot: the Kohler Bancroft.
I actually like the matching pedestal sink a lot too (more than the Promenade) but for some reason, although the 24" version is about $250, the 30" version (which is the one we need) is over $500.  Why is something that's 6" wider more than twice the price?  If it wasn't for that bizarre pricing, I'd be going with the Bancroft in the tenants' units instead of the Promenade.  At least the toilet is reasonably priced, so I'm leaning towards it for our 3 bathrooms.

I checked out kitchen sink faucets at a third showroom this morning and have a short list of options.  (Incidentally, though I came *this close* to ordering the Iron/Tones cast iron sink, I splurged a little and got fireclay instead.  The cheapest I could find that would fit the base cabinets was the Rohl Allia:

I think fireclay has a nicer feel than cast iron but more importantly, the dimensions of the Allia are more generous than those of the Iron/Tones and I really want to maximize the use of space.

For the tenants kitchen faucets to go with the above sink, I'm looking at this:

It's the Grohe Concetto Dual Spray, about $315.  A smidge more expensive than the other options but still reasonable.  It's also somewhat more modern than what I had in mind but the lines are undeniably sleek.  I'm also a little concerned about having such a high arched shape on a peninsula in an open kitchen.  Next, there's the American Standard Reliant, which is half the price of the Grohe and has a lower profile, so it wouldn't be as visually prominent on the peninsulas:
It's pretty boring, though, and the base plate would make me crazy.  Not sure if it can be ordered without it of whether there would be leakage problems.  Finally, this Opella Empire Series faucet is a bit of a dark horse:

I'd never heard of the brand before and it doesn't feel quite as substantial, but the styling is pleasantly traditional, without too many flourishes, and the price is great - similar to the Reliant.

For our unit, we're working with the giant 54" salvaged cast iron double sink that's got 3 pre-drilled holes.  If there were four holes, I'd definitely opt for something with 2 separate handles, a center spout and a side spray.  Also complicating matters is the fact that I need a finish that will play nicely with our copper countertops, so some version of oil rubbed bronze or brass is in the cards.  Those finishes also happen to be not widely available and usually cost a huge premium.  Frankly, some of the cheaper ones look kind of painted and fake, so I'm a bit leery of that too.   That said, the front-runner is this Rohl Country faucet:

A hair under $700, it's definitely not cheap, but the Tuscan Brass finish is gorgeous (the saleswoman said it also patinas beautifully) and Rohl is a respected enough brand that I'm reassured about the quality.  I'm also eyeing the Opella Empire faucet again but in the oil-rubbed bronze finish.

It's crazy-inexpensive ($110) but quite possibly also cheaply made, so I don't know whether it's worth the risk.  Thoughts?

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