While we’re not going to bore you with the history of the toilet, we'll just say that they’ve come a long way. They’re now a place of beauty - for the most part - with many bars and restaurants actually becoming famous because of them. And why? Well, they act as the ultimate backdrop for Instagram snaps, of course. From glamorous pink privies to bathrooms that look like they're living in 2050, here are the most beautiful (and bizarre) toilets in the UK and Ireland.
Birmingham: Tonight Josephine
This pretty in pink bar in Birmingham was made to be papped, with gorgeous magenta lighting, neon signage and all-round quirky décor. And, lucky for us, this extends all the way to the ladies. Tonight Josephine's bathrooms are a subtle shade of rose, with checkerboard floors and celebrity mugshots taped onto the back of the cubicle doors.
Annabel's has not one - but two beautiful toilets. The original is a palatial bathroom boudoir, decorated with grand floral wallpaper, mirrors boarded by illuminated flowers, plush stools and frilly curtains. Then in 2019, the restaurant upped its game even further. The latest luxurious loo features a jungle-inspired mosaic made with four million pieces of glass, plus pink basins, antique mirrors and a 500 kilo green onyx crocodile.
Sketch in Mayfair is truly an icon of the toilet world, with pictures of its gorgeous loos plastered all over the 'Gram. In contrast to the upmarket restaurant, the WC looks like a scene right out of a sci-fi flick. Open the doors and you're met with the spacecraft-like East, a hidden bar where you can knock back a couple of drinks before heading up to do your business. At the top of the stairs, the room has a kaleidoscope celling and is littered with white egg pods, which are in fact cubicles that, once you’re seated, treat you to an out-of-this-world LED show, complete with futuristic music.
Manchester: 20 Stories
Fancy a view from the loo? Then pop over to 20 Stories in Spinningfields. Known as one of the prettiest restaurants in Manchester, it's no surprise that the lofty lavatories are a sight to behold. The room itself has subtle minimalist décor, but the panoramic cityscape from the windows will have you feeling on top of the world.
London: Brasserie of Light
While Brasserie of Light may be more known for its striking Art Deco dining hall, complete with a magnificent 24-foot crystal Pegasus sculpture by Damien Hirst, their designer toilets are not to be scoffed at. Pop through to the pissoir and you’ll be greeted with pink marble paired with photographic mirrors and flattering lights. Go on, snap a quick pic – it would be rude not to.
Dublin: Café Bombo
Café Bombo in Dublin is an explosion of pink, with flowery wallpaper, florescent signs and cutesy furniture. And when it’s time to pop to the powder room, you’ll have the perfect setting for a cheeky photo shoot. Here, you’ll find pink tiles, rosy basins and a backdrop of naughty monkeys knocking back a couple of cocktails and smoking few ciggies (as you do).
Leeds: The Ivy
Need a new Hinge pic? We know just the setting. The Ivy in Leeds is home to some of the most beautiful toilets in the UK, boasting gold wallpaper that comes to life with red and blue flowers, which have been painted to give the illusion they're cascading down. There's also colour-matched stools, marble floors and tall mirrors - perfect for capturing your whole outfit in one shot.
Designed by Architects Studio C102, Redroaster in Brighton is a cool haven of coffee-slurping tranquillity, not to mention a complete treat for the eyes. The restaurant champions a ‘botanical punk’ theme, featuring light-toned backdrops juxtaposed with verdant foliage. You'll find a similar vibe in the bathrooms, as they boast white tiles as far as the eye can see, large, circular mirrors and generally minimalist decor, complemented by plants emerging out of the walls.
The latest drinking den that couples as an adult playground is Liverpool's NQ64. The bar is a haven of vintage arcade games, with themed cocktails and neon-splattered walls. Oh, and the bathrooms? Just as cool. They look purposely vandalized, with graffiti and tags covering every surface. Sounds a bit bizarre, but makes for a quality group photo.
On the hunt for more beautiful locations to fill up your feed? Check out our guide to the UK's most Instagrammable restaurants here.