2016 marks a special year for Victoria + Albert Baths as we celebrate our 20th anniversary. Formed in 1996 with a passion for luxury bathing, Victoria + Albert Baths is now recognised internationally for creating iconic pieces from our world-class Volcanic Limestone™ composite, QUARRYCAST®.

Scroll down to explore our achievements over the past two decades and see what 2016 has in store. We’ll be revealing new products, hosting a programme of worldwide events and giving away some fantastic prizes to celebrate our anniversary.

We look forward to continuing our journey with you over the next twenty years!

1996

A special rock

Two South African brothers, Nico and Alwyn Neethling, had developed an innovative composite material made from a rock we now call Volcanic Limestone™ and mixed with resin. The unique properties of the material made it both beautiful and hardwearing. British entrepreneur, Chris Davies, realised the potential for the composite within the bathroom sector and the partners began casting the first traditional freestanding baths in a factory in Worcester, Cape Town.

1997

sell out success

Back in the UK, the products were showcased for the first time at the KBB exhibition. Dealers were excited about a new material superior to acrylic and heavy cast iron and the whole container of stock sold out on the first morning!

1998

going global

News spread fast and demand for baths made from the unique material crossed the channel into mainland Europe. Baths were now exported to France, Norway and Spain.

2001

a modern move

The first contemporary bathtub was launched to accompany the now hugely popular traditional collection. To service the growing UK dealer network, a dedicated logistics base was created in Telford.

2003

a brand is launched

Victoria + Albert Baths became the global brand name and the first company website (www.vandabaths.com) was launched. The special composite material was officially named QUARRYCAST®.

2004

Landed in the USA

To manage the growing number of exports, Victoria + Albert USA was created with its own warehouse. Separate companies in Canada and Australia followed over the next 3 years.

2007

award winning rimless design

The first ‘rimless’ bath, the Napoli, was launched and sold out on the first day! The model won a Designer Manufacturer Award Commendation and later received a Platinum ADEC Award and GOOD DESIGN award.

2010

new home

The first ‘Specification Showroom’ opened in London at the Design Centre Chelsea Harbour, showcasing key models from the growing collections which now included basins and ‘made in England’ tapware.

2012

a trip to milan

Victoria + Albert Baths exhibited in Italy for the first time at the world famous Salone del Mobile in Milan, a global benchmark for the home interiors industry.

2014

an italian collaboration

An exciting collaboration with Sandro Meneghello and Marco Paolelli of Milan began, leading to the Red Dot award winning Amiata collection. reddot award 2015 logo

2015

international design awards

The Victoria + Albert Design Awards competition opened worldwide, giving designers the chance to see their bathroom design come to life at Salone del Mobile in 2016. The first furniture collection was developed using the finest European hardwoods.

What's new for 2016

Birthday Celebrations!

This year Victoria + Albert Baths celebrates two successful decades of manufacturing with the unique QUARRYCAST® composite. We’ve launched a number of exciting products at Salone del Mobile, Milan this year and will be celebrating our anniversary with a programme of events around the world.

Scroll across to discover more.

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What's new for 2016

Three new bath designs

We’re delighted to announce the launch of three new bath designs for 2016.  The baths capture the very essence of Victoria + Albert, with unique details and iconic lines in each design.

Discover the new Terrassa, Warndon and Pescadero designs.

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What's new for 2016

Customise with colour

2016 is the year of colour for Victoria + Albert Baths as we introduce colour finishes to all baths and basins! For the first time ever, our baths and basins are customisable with a selection of colours and finishes to choose from. Take a look at our colour options.

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What's new for 2016

New brassware collection

We welcome a brand new brassware collection this year to supplement our existing Tubo and Staffordshire ranges. The new 6-part collection is made in England, and takes inspiration from Art Deco design.

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What's new for 2016

New furniture

Following the launch of our inaugural furniture collection last year, we have introduced a bigger range of vanity furniture this year. Expect innovative storage solutions, glossy finishes and sleek designs, all made in England from the very best hardwoods.

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What's new for 2016

Winning design unveiled

On 12 April at Salone del Mobile, we unveiled the winning bathroom design from our International Design Awards competition. One lucky designer got the chance to see their concept bathroom come to life at one of the top international destinations for interior design. See the winning design.

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History of Bathing

As we reflect on the past 20 years and look forward to the next developments for Victoria + Albert, we take a look at what it is that has cemented bathing in history.

The early bath

Records of constructed bath houses date to as early as 2800 BC in Ancient Egypt. But it was the Greeks in 800 BC who really adopted bathing. Greek mythology specified that certain pools and springs were blessed by the gods to cure disease. Bathing chambers and facilities were founded around these springs. The earliest findings of slipper-style clay bathtubs are in the Queen’s Bathroom at the Minoan Palace of Knossos in Crete, built around 1900BC.

In and out of favour

During the Renaissance, large public baths fell out of favour as water was viewed as a vector of disease. In the intervening centuries, it was believed that water harmed the skin and the “dry bath” was de rigeur. During the Enlightenment, water was once again accepted for cleaning. In the late 19th century, the philanthropic Movement enabled people from all walks of life to enjoy the positive health benefits of bathing. Bath houses, equipped with the iconic freestanding roll-topped baths, were heralded as a great leap forward for public health.

Heating up

Until the 1800s, various materials were used to pipe water from A to B, including clay, bamboo and wood. Lead was a popular material from Roman times until the 20th century, though steel, copper and PVC have now become more commonplace. In fact, the word “plumb” derives from the Latin for lead, “plumbum”. Around 1870, hot water systems were designed for domestic applications and plumbed hot water made warm baths a reality for homeowners.

Into the home

The 1880s saw the start of bath mass production. In some homes bedrooms were converted into bathrooms, becoming what would later be known as the master suite. Toiletry manufacturers saw a market for bath oils and soaps, and in the early 20th century bathing became a luxurious and fashionable pastime, with iconic advertising promoting a range of lotions and potions to the mass market.  The bathroom became a relaxing refuge from the world.

Developing materials

With bathing becoming more popular with all demographics, the bathroom industry boomed in the 20th century. A number of different materials evolved beyond traditional enamel, porcelain and cast iron, to better suit the needs of the modern population. Our unique composite, QUARRYCAST®, combines the natural properties of Volcanic Limestone™ with modern resins, giving a naturally white, smooth and glossy surface. The one-piece casting allows us to create unique shapes in modern and traditional styles that have been installed in residences and luxury hotels around the world.

Bathing today

With today’s busy, technology-driven lifestyle, it can feel hard to set time aside for a simple bath. But the reasons that people still enjoy bathing after thousands of years are still the same. Proven to enhance overall physical and mental wellbeing, a hot bath calms the mind, relaxes muscles and detoxes the body. Not only that, but a bath adds beauty and architectural interest to a room.  So our challenge to you this year: make time for bath time!