Natural materials help this family kitchen connect with its outlooks

Marble benchtops, oak-fronted cabinetry and oiled oak floors all contribute to a warm, relaxed aesthetic in this central yet understated kitchen

Story by: Charles Moxham Photography by: David Straight
While this island’s marble waterfall benchtop doesn’t dominate architecture, ceiling, house, interior design, real estate, white
While this island’s marble waterfall benchtop doesn’t dominate when the kitchen is viewed from the dining area, it has a dramatic impact as the first thing you notice when you enter this area from the adjacent hallway. 

This comprehensive renovation, with a brand new kitchen at its heart, stays within the original footprint to meet existing use rights –  but everything else has changed.

The 1960s home is nestled amongst  established pohutukawa trees with great views to Coxs Bay below, says architect Ben Lloyd of Lloyd Hartley Architects.

“However, the rear of the home was poorly connected to the views and lacked natural light. To address this we first stripped the entire space back to the studs and took out the ceiling, opening the volume up to the high gabled roofline.”

The architects then introduced glazed doors and high windows, opening up the views and flooding the open-plan space with sunlight. Custom cabinetry elements, including a television unit and a day bed unit, help to organise the expansive room.


“The owners wanted the kitchen to meld with the surroundings and also connect with the natural world outside.”

Material choices played an important part in this. The white wall in the adjacent hall wraps around to form the back of the kitchen, while other wood elements in the interior and the pohutukawa trees connect with the oak-fronted cabinetry.

This slender marble benchtop overhangs the front of countertop, cuisine classique, interior design, kitchen, brown
This slender marble benchtop overhangs the front of the kitchen island, creating a family breakfast bar.

“A feature of the kitchen is the slender marble benchtops on the island and side cabinetry. The richly veined stone links with the oak cabinetry and prominent use of wood and brass throughout the home.”

To further assimilate the kitchen, Lloyd minimised visible hardware, with push catch and recessed handles used on much of the cabinetry.

Some appliances are also integrated, such as the large double fridge set behind closed doors to the right of the wall ovens.

On the other side of the kitchen, back from the prep counter, a timber bulkhead matching the cabinetry leads through to a walk-in scullery. This helps to keep the on show kitchen clutter-free in visual terms.

As a social hub, the kitchen also had to be easy to use by more than one family member at a time. To this end, there are several work surfaces, while appliances such as the fridge and wine fridge are easy to reach without entering the kitchen proper.

Jun 12, 2018

Credit list

Ben Lloyd and Mike Hartley, Lloyd Hartley Architects
Cabinetry hardware
Window glass
Astra Walker­ with Eco Brass finish
Gaggenau induction
Miele­, integrated
Wine fridge
Gaggenau, under-bench
Light Cut Mini by Flos, from EEC
Oak cabinetry fronts, matt black and matt white lacquer­
Fusion marble, from SCE Stone + Design; stainless steel
Kitchen sink
Reginox undermount double sink,­ black
Gaggenau 400 Series
Gaggenau, integrated
Oak, white oiled
Trends International Design Awards Kitchens – Runner Up





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