European Kitchen Features Function With Flair

by WOHe

European Kitchen Features Function With
Flair

By John Filippelli


TRONDHEIM, NORWAYRepeat business usually takes a designer only as
far as the next room over. However, for Troy L. Adams, CKD, and
president of Honolulu, HI and Los Angeles, CA-based Studio Becker,
one satisfied customer’s decision to contact him for repeat
business took him halfway across the world.

The clients, whose kitchen in San Francisco Adams had previously
designed, contracted him to remodel their summer home kitchen which
just happened to be located in Norway. Not surprisingly, they
wanted a contemporary design that would be inspired by European
aesthetics and a strong sense of function. However, they also
wanted to be sure the kitchen complemented the California stucco
style design theme of the home.

Additionally, they wanted a design that would facilitate food
preparation, since both clients are avid cooks. 

For Adams, this posed some unique challenges. First, the
kitchen’s location made site tours less than convenient, so he was
forced to rely heavily on the clients for guidance. However, while
the location seemed initially daunting, ultimately, it was
advantageous, Adams believes, since it allowed him to be more
creative. As he explains, “European clients tend to be ahead of the
rest of the world when it comes to kitchen design.” 

A second challenge came in the form of lack of space. The
original kitchen was small, long, narrow and dark, and needed to be
reworked to accommodate the clients’ desire for a more open floor
plan that would be easier to navigate during food preparation. To
address this, Adams removed an existing peninsula with bar counter,
freeing up extra space and creating a more open feeling.

A white color scheme also helps to brighten up the previously
dark space, while enhancing the stylish stainless steel appliances
and warm granite countertops. 

Cabinetry style
Adams chose Studio
Becker’s M15 Series model Milano cabinetry to update the space from
an “antiquated, traditional space with dark wood cabinets and
raised panels” to a more modern kitchen that would meet the needs
of the clients. This was very important, he notes, as the clients
requested that the walls not be “wall-papered” with
cabinets. 

The cabinetry is central to the room’s appeal, with a
high-gloss, beech-color finish that provides both a sense of warmth
and contemporary style. 

According to Adams, he got ideas for the cabinetry by visiting
European trade shows. For function, he installed large upper
cabinets with doors that hinge upward and wide drawers to house
dishes, plates and cups.

The cabinetry also provides the focal point of the kitchen,
which, according to Adams, is a one-of-a-kind cabinet piece called
“the wing.” The piece, located above the sink, offers a futuristic
component to the design. It is approximately five feet wide and
features a slightly curved metal door with tiny holes. It is also
fitted with a hydraulic system. The door swings upward when opened,
exposing large, deep shelves, making it both aesthetically bold and
easily accessible, Adams states. 

The cabinets are made of solid wood and feature brushed nickel
handles. A set of 5′ wide pull-out drawers located under the stove
feature a white gloss finish that matches panels on the dishwasher
and refrigerator, as well. 

Another interesting component to the room, Adams notes, “is a
concave tall corner area that features open-glass shelves that are
lit from behind, casting a light glow through the glass
shelves.

“The back-lit glass shelves and the effect of the interior
cabinet lighting in the ‘wing’ piece gives the perfect night
lighting, which was extremely important to the homeowners,” Adams
points out.

Back-lit glass shelves feature fluorescent lighting that
gives off very little heat and allows the homeowners to keep the
light on year-round. This makes the house appear as though it is
always lived in even when no one is there.

Further, a curved soffit, painted white and fitted with recessed
lights, blends with the kitchen’s other design elements, adding to
the warmth of the design theme.

Adams also chose to mix and match colors with the countertops,
combining black granite for the cooktop area and stainless steel
for the sink area and prep sink area. 

Appliance guide
Ensuring that the space would remain functional, Adams incorporated
a variety of high-end European products to meet the clients’ needs.
Adams chose a Miele range, oven and stainless steel hood as the
primary appliances in the work area. The stainless steel hood and
black-gloss cooktop blend comfortably, both in function and style,
while maintaining the integrity of the design theme.

Adding to the design’s contemporary style is the main sink and
prep sink from the Studio Becker Design Element Program, both in
stainless steel. Adding style and function is a 27″ Sub-Zero
refrigerator with matching white-gloss panels, which also blends
with the color scheme.

A combination of granite and a beech wood parquet were used for
the floor, both of which blend smoothly with the countertops and
appliances. The parquet floor is mirrored in the ceiling and
features a grand piano shape, Adams notes. The rest of the ceiling
that mirrors the granite floor is dropped approximately eight
inches to fit halogen down lights.

Storage space
While storage space was a
key component of the design, the clients also required that the
design allow them to freely move about the kitchen. Using this to
his advantage, Adams incorporated creative storage space solutions
into the design. The kitchen features two built-in pantries for
additional storage space, Adams notes, both of which retain the
open feel of the space while offering extra storage options. One,
located to the right of the oven, is a curved, tall pantry and
features 20 baskets that swing out. There is also additional
storage in the curved doors of this pantry, he continues. 

The other, a corner pantry to the left of the cooktop, features
half-moon-shaped swing-out shelves for easy access during food
preparation or cleanup after meals.

Completing the design, Adams installed a backsplash rail to hang
utensils on. Stainless steel swiveling baskets provide a striking
final touch, making this a truly functional and visually powerful
design that combines the clients’ California sensibilities with a
little bit of European flair.

project highlights

  • This summer home kitchen, designed by Troy L. Adams, CKD, and
    located in Norway, was created for a California-based client, and
    combines California style with European flair.
  • The major design concern centered around creating a
    multi-functional kitchen one that would offer avant-garde
    aesthetics and a sense of warmth with enough space for the clients,
    both avid cooks, to easily navigate. 
  • By removing an existing peninsula that came complete with a bar
    counter, Adams was able to open up the small, long, narrow space,
    giving the clients the additional floor space they requested.
  • Studio Becker Milano cabinetry, complete with a high-gloss,
    beech-color finish and brushed nickel handles, was used to create a
    feeling of warmth. However, function, too, is evident in the large
    upper cabinets that hinge upward, and wide pull-out drawers under
    the stove. 
  • These provide the kitchen with ample storage space without
    creating the “wall-papered with cabinets” look that the clients so
    wanted to avoid.
  •  The focal point of the room is a one-of-a-kind cabinet
    piece called “the wing.” Located above the sink, it offers a
    futuristic component to the design.
  • The white color scheme was chosen to enhance the modern feel of
    the cabinetry, countertops and appliances, while complementing the
    overall California stucco-style of the house.
  •  Products include: Studio Becker Milano cabinetry with a
    high-gloss, beech-colored finish; black granite and stainless steel
    counters; 27″ Sub-Zero refrigerator with matching white-gloss
    panels; Miele range with black gloss cooktop; Miele oven and
    stainless steel hood; main sink and prep sink in stainless steel
    from Studio Becker; KWC chrome faucets; Bianco real granite
    flooring, and recessed lighting and under-cabinet halogen
    lights. 

 

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