Category: Bathroom remodeling, over $100,000

Location: Plainsboro, N.J.

Contractor: Michael Kaiser, Kaiser Building Co., Cranbury, N.J.

Designer: Stuart Richardson, Luna Design, Cranbury

Jim Gerberich

Talented subcontractors, cooperative homeowners, efficient production — these may be important to the success of a remodel. Even more important to unlocking a room's potential, however, is a fertile imagination. High quality finishes and a plethora of unconventional extras (including a plasma screen television, Bose surround-sound speaker system, and a gas fireplace) upped the cost of this project and certainly helped in creating its appeal. But it was the collective imagination of remodeler Michael Kaiser and designer Stuart Richardson that really made the project stand out.

Clever choices that appear easy in retrospect are the connective tissue that holds this project together. Relocating a walk-in closet in the master bedroom was an important first step that freed much-needed space for the new bathtub and fireplace. This move also represents the most significant structural change, another tribute to the creativity that brought about the finished space.

Standout aesthetic choices include the use of colorful mosaic tile, not only around the rim of the tub but in the hearth and the back of the built-in shelf recesses — a touch that unifies the design.