Repositioning the existing kitchen creates a central hub for this home

Two-tone surfaces, modern cabinetry, plenty of storage and great lighting all make this kitchen the ideal social hub within the home’s wider renovated setting

Nothing exists in a vacuum, and that’s surely true of this kitchen, shaped by the owners’ needs and as a response to the wider surroundings.

Architect Michael Folk was commissioned to undertake substantial renovations to a 1970s harbour-view home for a family of six. This included moving and redesigning the kitchen.

“We repositioned the existing kitchen into the original open-plan family room, thereby creating a central hub for the home,” says Folk. 

“This also freed up the existing kitchen space for open-plan dining connected to the lounge.”

However, one challenge was maintaining the lofty cathedral ceilings in the public spaces. To do this, a massive cranked steel beam was engineered to follow the sloping ceiling, replacing a wall removed for a more seamless, open-plan aesthetic.

The new kitchen is U-shaped in plan, with a tall return element on one side providing a screen from the entry hall. This contains tall elements including the refrigerator and pantry.

The wall ovens, an appliance garage and the cooktop are positioned on the kitchen’s rear wall. The central island, complete with casual breakfast seating, provides definition between the kitchen and the newly opened living spaces.

On the opposite side of the kitchen to the tall return, a servery bench with cavity slider windows above accesses the enlarged deck. The servery also includes a coffee station.

“Being a relatively large kitchen, we selected contrasting materials to break down the sense of scale,” says Folk. 

“So the design is two-tone – white polyurethane cabinetry contrasting the tall corner cabinetry and island base, which are finished in a smoky grained timber veneer.”

The kitchen’s scale was further broken down with a combination of two benchtop elements, – white, grained Caesarstone and stainless steel.   

Given the kitchen’s lofty cathedral ceiling, another challenge was introducing dedicated task lighting. To address this, the architect added multiple light systems, including LED strips below the rear overhead cupboards.

More natural light comes via a new central skylight, while a pelmet conceals lighting above the servery window. In addition, there are strategically set wall lights with a simple linear pendant hanging above the central island.

New engineered oak flooring provides a warm common finish running throughout the reworked kitchen and the adjoining spaces.

Credit list

Renovating architect and kitchen designer
Michael Folk, Michael Folk Architects and Interiors
Benchtops and splashbacks
Caesarstone and stainless steel
Kitchen sink
3 Monkeez, stainless steel
Miele, induction
Trends International Design Awards (TIDA) Kitchens – Highly Commended
MDF Polyurethane with Ravenswood Navurban Timber Veneer
Engineered oak timber by Austral Flooring
Oven, dishwasher
Miele, from Winning Appliances
Qasair, from Winning Appliances
Water dispenser

Story by: Charles Moxham

Photography by: E Rodoni and I Pistone

17 May, 2020

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