Divide and conquer kitchen with double islands by designer Steven Gamper and Cedric Brown

This kitchen by Steven Gamper has a symmetric feel
Story by: Charles Moxham
This formal dining area is positioned beside a dining room, furniture, home, interior design, living room, restaurant, room, table, brown
This formal dining area is positioned beside a kitchen that has two symmetrical islands. The design is by Steven Gamper and owner Cedric Brown.

When you entertain on a large scale it makes sense to design a kitchen that is both generous and welcoming. However, part of the agenda is ensuring its size doesn't overwhelm a visitor at first glance. One way to optimize functionality and at the same time play down visual mass is to introduce two kitchen islands instead of one.

For this kitchen, by designer Steven Gamper and owner Cedric Brown, there are two islands, two dishwashers, two ovens with drawers and two sinks. This approach allows more than one chef to use the kitchen at the same time without getting under each other's feet, says Brown.

"Besides the plus of dual work surfaces, two islands also avoid a monolithic chunk at the front of the space and allow speedy entry into the heart of the kitchen, without the need to navigate round a massive piece of cabinetry."

Gamper says the symmetry of the L-shaped islands is continued right through the aesthetic.

Soft, ovoid lighting provides a contrast to the cabinetry, countertop, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, gray
Soft, ovoid lighting provides a contrast to the mainly rectilinear forms in this kitchen designed by Steven Gamper and owner Cedric Brown. The kitchen is designed to cater to large numbers as the owners socialize often. Double counters offer ample elbow space and a wine cooler stands in the far corner of the room.

"Lacquered countertop cabinets are set to left and right of the central cooktop and tall cherry cabinets stand beyond these again on each side, with two rectangular windows above."

Part of the room's clean-lined balance comes from a strong emphasis on horizontal lines and rectangular shapes. The lacquered cabinet fronts, cherry drawers, stainless steel drawers beneath the cooktop, and even the windows and doors have this emphasis. In contrast, the space is overarched by a shallow barrel ceiling.

Other exceptions to the accent on straight lines and balance are the coffee machine and steam convection oven, which are set into protruding framed elements, offset from the cherry base cabinets. On the opposite side of the kitchen two ovens are similarly asymmetrically framed.

While the design offers a sense of formality, the material palette brings warmth. Three wood species feature in this space the rich zebrano bartops set above the islands, the mid-tone cherry cabinets and the dark-stained oak floor and matching window and door frames.

The dramatic grain in the zebrano wood in cabinetry, countertop, cuisine classique, home, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, gray
The dramatic grain in the zebrano wood in this kitchen makes a feature of the twin bar tops. Contrasting stainless steel countertops provide easy upkeep, another advantage for an entertainers kitchen. The design is by Steven Gamper and owner Cedric Brown.

"I wanted to achieve the look of a modern Italian villa and material choices played a part in this, too," says Brown. "The backsplash is in a classic basketweave pattern but the tiles are gray slate for a more contemporary accent. This stone also features in other areas of the home, as do the stained oak window and door surrounds.

"The pared-back base trim also walks a fine line between rustic and minimalist modern."

Jun 19, 2013

Credit list

John Knight AIA,
Kitchen designer
Steven Gamper,
Southland Development Services
Stainless steel, Zebrano wood by CSI Kitchen & Bath Studio
Wall tiles
Gray slate from Ceramic Technics
Artemide Lighting
Kitchen sink
Oven, ventilation, dishwasher
Waste disposal
Interior designer
W Cedric Brown
Cabinet company
Leicht USA
Leicht cherry; Largo lacquered; Oak Anthracite accents
Zodiac stone in Warm Taupe from Stone Technics
Ralph Lauren Modern Studio and Organza from Home Depot
Hunter Douglas
We know the specialists