Perfect Harmony

Balance – one of the great design skills, was critical for this renovation project, in order to achieve perfect harmony between an old villa and its new extension. 

Using the transition from old wood to new concrete flooring as a design cue, the island bench has a concrete-look stone benchtop with an integrated wooden chopping board. Inset into the stone is a clever in-bench ice-bucket (transforming back to usable bench space when the lid is on).

Integrating the fridge and rangehood achieves a seamless wall of cabinetry, with visual interest and depth provided by the textured tile splashback.   

Big on entertaining, this family’s former kitchen was converted to a fully equipped butler’s pantry to create clear space for guests and serving food.  We love the dedicated drinks and coffee station positioned close to the dining area but out of the way of ‘the action’.

The story of this kitchen…

Kitchens in large, open-plan spaces require thoughtful detailing and a careful choice of materials and appliances so that they fit comfortably into their environments.

This impressive kitchen, designed by Kim Primrose from Mastercraft Kitchens Pukekohe, commands a prime position in a grand old villa on a rural property that has recently undergone a major renovation. This included the addition of a major new extension that now contains the new kitchen, living and dining spaces. A scullery now occupies the space previously taken by the existing kitchen, with the new kitchen straddling the area between the new and the old part of the house – demarcated by the change of flooring material, from timber to concrete.

The designer inserted a new wall between the kitchen and scullery that stops short of the existing board-and-batten ceiling. This has the effect of preserving and highlighting the home’s traditional past, and helps to add a sense of spaciousness and connection between both rooms.

“My clients asked for an open, easy-clean area, with lots of bench space – and they had fairly strong ideas of what look they wanted,” says Kim. “Rather than sticking with a more traditional look that would match the rest of the house, they wanted to go with a semi-industrial, modern aesthetic, which is why we decided on the concrete-look island and benchtops.”

The aptly named ‘Rugged Concrete’ Caesarstone was chosen as the predominant material for the kitchen. This 20mm-thick engineered stone was then mitred to appear more substantial. “Because of the size of the island [3.6m] and length of the benchtop, it needed that extra thickness to make it stand out in the space,” says the designer. “It also gives the appearance of being cast out of solid concrete, without the issues associated with being poured in one piece.”

At the request of her clients, the large island needed to accommodate a couple of unique features. At the end closest to the scullery, a large, custom-made Rimu butcher’s block has been integrated into the benchtop; at the other, there’s a nifty, built-in ice sink, which can be hidden by a piece of matching benchtop material when not in use.

The return end of the benchtop along the back wall acts as a drinks/entertainment centre, with space for an industrial-size coffeemaker, boiling-water tap, and under-bench wine fridge and storage. A short up-stand gives some separation/protection from the adjoining banquette seating.

A double-width (1200mm) eight-burner, twin-oven range, dissects the length of the benchtop. Normally, an appliance of this size would dominate a space, but here it sits comfortably, due to the scale of rest of the kitchen. The down-lit textured subway tiles add visual interest to the back wall, above which is a bank of extra-wide overhead cupboards. The tall cabinetry at far end of the benchtop contains an integrated French-door fridge-freezer and pullout pantry.

The adjoining scullery is practically a fully functioning secondary kitchen in its own right, complete with sink, fridge-freezer, dishwasher, and even an industrial icemaker. There is plenty of storage – a lot of it designed as easily accessible open shelving, says the designer. And there’s also an abundance of bench space for food prep and the use of small appliances. To visually connect the two spaces, the designer specified the same tiled splashback and concrete-look Caesarstone benchtops.

Mastercraft Kitchens also get involved in areas of the home. Here, they also designed and built the laundry, clever pull-out hallway linen cupboard and entertainment unit. Synchronising design and materials from your kitchen throughout your home creates flow and continuity.

Kitchen Specifications

Benchtop: Caesarstone – Rugged Concrete with Integrated Rimu Chopping Board by The Woodsmiths

Cabinets: Dezignatek – White Flat Panel

Hardware: Blum – Antaro Drawers 

Handles: Archant – Swan, Antique Grey

Integrated ice bucket: Schock Sink Mono D-100XS in Quartz

Splashback: White Subway Tiles 

Electrical: HPM Life Series Sockets & Switches

By Mastercraft Kitchens Pukekohe

Designed by Kim Primrose