drawers and units. “Having a really well- organized internal set-up within the kitchen is luxurious in itself,” he believes. NEW SPACES “Luxury consumers are seeking expanded kitchens combining pantry, mud room, larger workspace, highest-quality appliances, and leading-edge technology to cater for entertaining needs, and to create a place where families gather and make a lifetime of memories,” explains Kathleen Coumou, Executive Director, Broker of Record at Christie’s International Real Estate. “Secondary kitchens for home offices are a necessity, making the work environment truly comfortable and filled with conveniences.” Elevating the humble utility room or scullery into a useful cook or housekeeper’s hideout follows this thinking. “In almost all of our homes we include full butler’s kitchens that offer all the amenities of a primary kitchen but are hidden from view,” Natale continues. Architect and designer Blainey North, who has offices in New York, London, and Sydney, concurs. “We are spending less time in the kitchen and more time having meals delivered. Thus we are seeing a trend towards kitchens being located away from the living spaces. In effect, this is a return to the 19th century, where the kitchen was principally used as a secondary area for staff and meal preparation.” FINESSING THE FINISH Matte finish options have proliferated over the past year and the trend continues, shifting the emphasis from the purely visual to the tactile— the feel of the surfaces is as important as the look.
“shadowy tones, antiqued hardware, and rich stone accents combine in a sultry atmosphere that feels less a place for food prep and washing the dishes than it does a cocktail lounge,” he says. “But it’s not just black; we’re also seeing a deep emerald green. However, it’s less a particular color and more of the mood designers are seeking to create.” Gary Singer of the London branch of Eggersmann Design says that although there are a lot of dark elements in kitchens right now, he’s seen a swing back to fresher, lighter palettes and monochrome layering of many different finishes to create depth and individuality. The company pays huge attention to detail, using clever lighting and premium finishes such as leather and silk inside the—perfectly calculated—
Mixing it up: London’s Roundhouse created this high-sheen lacquer, hammered silver, and driftwood veneer kitchen ( top ), while Australia’s Greg Natale applied a patterned approach to a home in Hamilton Island ( right ) and Avoca House ( far right ).
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