Sculptural kitchen island makes a dramatic statement

Interior designer Jamie Drake doesn’t cook – so what kind of kitchen would he design for his own apartment?

Story by: Paul Taylor Photography by: Marco Ricco
For the design of his own New York home, interior design, living room, real estate, room, gray
For the design of his own New York apartment, interior designer Jamie Drake had to overcome the challenge of a large structural column in the middle of the living area. His solution was to make it even bigger, turning it into an attractive feature for the TV, books and storage. The same materials used to surround the column were then also used for the kitchen cabinetry.

When high profile New York interior designerJamie Drake designs a kitchen for a client, he says the most important thing to understand is how the homeowners are actually going to use it.

So how did that play out when he designed the kitchen for his own new apartment?

“I never cook, but I do entertain a lot,” he says. “And when I entertain, I use caterers. Having kitchen space for food preparation was not a big deal for me."


“I needed a kitchen that was much more sculptural, that made a big statement, and served my entertaining purposes.”

In all of Drake’s previous homes, he’d never had an open kitchen. But one of the things that attracted him to this particular apartment was its enormous 9m square living space.

“I wanted to maintain that, so having an open kitchen here was a much more appealing idea.”

While the large living area, 4.8m-high ceilings and its park and Hudson River views were all positives, there was one specific challenge Drake was faced with when designing the interior and kitchen – a 90cm square, structural column plonked in the centre of the space.

“I struggled with what to do with it and in the end decided to make it much bigger and turn it into a prominent feature. It now has multiple functions – housing the television, a bookcase and storage.”

At over 5m long, this angled kitchen island countertop, furniture, interior design, room, gray
At over 5m long, this angled kitchen island makes an immediate sculptural statement when visitors walk into the apartment. As owner and designer Jamie Drake never cooks, the island is used as an entertainment zone and buffet, rather than for food preparation.

The variety of materials he used for the millwork surrounding the column – ebonised oak, antiqued steel and grey lacquered door frames with woven metal mesh insets – were then used in the design of the kitchen, but with different detailing.

They can be seen in the designated work wall at the back of the kitchen, which houses the cooktop, oven, sink, dishwasher, fridge and pantry.

“Once I’d established this functional layout, I knew I wanted a big island. I sketched out a variety of shapes before settling on this enormous runway that thrusts you into the room when you come round the corner from the entry.”

This Corian counter angles away from the kitchen, countertop, cuisine classique, floor, flooring, interior design, kitchen, loft, table, gray
This Corian counter angles away from the kitchen, drawing visitors in as they enter the apartment. The subtle colours and finishes of materials used in the kitchen are complemented the Venetian plaster finish to the walls and ceiling.

At over 5m long, the island is made of Corian, inset with a gold resin pattern that Drake designed to represent raindrops falling and expanding out on the river.

The counter angles away from the kitchen, drawing visitors into the space. It sits on top of a large box structure, running parallel to the work wall, with storage on the kitchen side, and decorated with stencilled gold leaf on the living room side.

“It’s a very individualistic design, with a dramatic and sculptural quality,” says Drake. “Everyone who comes in for the first time gasps when they see it.”

Aug 27, 2018

Credit list

Interior and kitchen designer
Jamie Drake, Drake Anderson
Flooring
Ebonised Teak
Cabinetry
Custom design; lacquered maple, ebonised oak, patinated steel, gold leaf
Countertops
Cooking zone – Silestone Negro Tebas; island – Corian with gold resin insets by Orion RED
Kitchen sink
Franke
Ventilation
Faber
Refrigeration
Sub-Zero
Lighting
Pendants from Boyd Lighting
Builder
Uberto
Wallcoverings
Teodorico plaster by The Alpha Workshops
Custom cabinetry handles
H Theophile
Splashback
Grey Mirror
Oven and cooktop
Wolf
Microwave
GE Profile
Dishwasher
Miele
Bar stools
Bright Group
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