VENTNOR, NJ — Ocean views are a mainstay of Casa Dorado, a landmark home in Ventnor, NJ that was the site for the 14th Anniversary RNS Show House at the Shore. The 7,500-sq.-ft. Moorish/Italianate house that boasts 25 rooms showcases many of the styles distinctive to that style home – ornamental motifs, mosaic tiles, wrought iron pieces and windows with brightly colored leaded glass. Blending Styles
When the designers from Design Studio Interiors, in Linwood, NJ, took on the kitchen project in this 1927 home, they were actually tackling three rooms: the main kitchen, a butler’s pantry and a powder room.
The butler’s pantry, which connects the dining room with the kitchen, was designed as a combination bar/pantry. Upon entering from the dining room, the right side of the pantry features a 48" Sub-Zero refrigerator with wood panel doors flanked by two 96"-high pantry closets. On the opposite wall, a bar set-up showcases a fully integrated stainless steel sink and countertop, finished with faucets in oil-rubbed bronze from California Faucets.
Cabinets with glass doors and interior lighting hang on the wall above the sink, providing a space to display glassware, adding to the room’s upscale barroom feel. Either side of the sink features tall cabinets with Ionian reeded pilasters that rise from floor to ceiling. The backsplash behind the sink features a tumbled marble centerpiece surrounded by a metal tile design.
“The cabinetry itself has a very simple face [with] a frame with a beadboard inset” for a Nantucket sort of aesthetic, notes Robert McCarty, managing member for Design Studio Interiors. The cabinetry, from Elmwood, is cherry with a high sheen finish over a burgundy shade, enhancing the room’s rich appeal.
The 21"x21" porcelain floor tiles simulate stone, and were used throughout the butler’s pantry, kitchen and powder room, tying the rooms together. In the pantry, tiles from Walker Zanger were added near the outside border of the floor, “creating a carpet design,” says Suzanne Lacroix, interior designer and member partner of Design Studio Interiors.
The room’s rich, elegant design is actually enhanced by its lack of natural light, according to the designers. While there are no windows in the room, “there is a very funky, low-voltage lighting system with little bulbs on dimmers,” remarks McCarty.
From the warm dark tones of the bar/pantry, an arched doorway leads to an L-shaped kitchen with cabinets from Elmwood finished in Limestone, an off-white base with a glaze. The kitchen cabinets have the same beadboard look inset as the cabinets in the butler’s pantry.
“We used a raised-panel cabinet in MDF in the kitchen, because there is so much moisture down at the shore,” reports McCarty. The cabinets were topped with granite countertops in a brown/cream combination that had “phenomenal movement,” he adds.
Along the wall, a tall cabinet houses a stainless steel three-in-one microwave/oven/warming drawer from Wolf, followed by a base cabinet, a freestanding stainless steel commercial 36" Wolf range and then another base cabinet. Above the range is a 54" mantle-type hood in the limestone finish, which is flanked by cabinets on both sides.
Ceramic tile from Sonoma Tilemakers in Cognac, a maize color, was used in the kitchen backsplash.
A stainless steel sink from KWC with faucets from Grohe, as well as a dishwasher, are tucked into the space on the adjacent wall. “The return is very simplistic,” notes McCarty. “We had to work with the walls that were there, and the wall above the sink and dishwasher was all windows.”
The island acts as a sit-down area, with seating featured on three sides. Storage is also incorporated into its design. In addition to the high hats featured throughout the room, an ornate chandelier in a maize tone adds light to the island area.