MIAMI, FL — Less is more, or so they say. In the case of this 156-sq.-ft. kitchen, that’s certainly true. The owner/designer of this townhouse revamped the kitchen, maximizing and opening up the space, all while keeping within the same tiny footprint.
“The home was built in 1978, and, quite frankly, the kitchen was the most awful thing I’d ever seen in 31 years in the industry,” shares Steve Stark, CKD. “It was small, dark and cramped with one opening to the entranceway, and it had plastic laminate and wood-veneer cabinets. The design really made poor use of space. There was much room for improvement.”
Indeed, and that was just the starting point. When Stark purchased this second vacation home here in Miami, he knew he not only had to revamp the kitchen, but also the entire house. However, he also quickly realized that if he could start in the kitchen and open it up, the rest of the home would come together.
Stark, who’s also v.p./sales and marketing for Independence, KS-based Prestige Cabinets, figured out that if he broke through two wall areas – one area between the kitchen and living area, and one area by the eating space – then he could open the kitchen to the dining area and entranceway without a lot of fuss.
“[It was rather] strategic, in that the wall openings [were] only [on] the upper portion, leaving a half sheetrock wall below. [It allowed me to cut out the hassle of] finishing the back of the cabinets and supporting countertops. After completely opening the upper section of wall over the sink, a peninsula wall cabinet was designed and cleverly placed with ribbed, frosted-glass doors to create [an element] through which light would pass and yet be functional and offer access to the dining room,” explains Stark.
Functionality continues with the dual-function table. “The table at counter height (36") pulls double duty as an eating space and food preparation area. The table fastens to the 34-1/2"-high sheetrock wall that is open above. This gives the table the rigidity it needs, [without the added hassle of] finishing and supporting a countertop,” he continues.
“[Overall], it was a dramatic change, but one that allowed the kitchen to take on a more spacious feeling deserving of a larger home, rather than a 2,500-sq.-ft. vacation townhouse,” believes Stark. “The kitchen makes a stunning statement when you walk into the entranceway.”
Miami Design Machine
One he broke through the two walls, Stark wanted to infuse the kitchen with a warm, contemporary feeling while paying subtle homage to Miami.
He used a combination of warm tile seen on the tumbled travertine marble backsplash and white porcelain ceramic floor, rich green countertops and glass halogen pendant lighting.
The combination of materials and colors creates what he feels represents the new Miami style – especially when paired with the warm, dark wood grain of the hickory wood cabinetry from Prestige. The cabinets feature the Georgetown door style and a Paprika finish. “I see the trend in Miami now going toward more dark woods with warm tones and more visible wood grains,” elaborates Stark.
He selected traditional upper and base cabinets, and installed a pantry/microwave combination cabinet that provides functional floor to ceiling storage and recaptures the cabinet space that was lost by opening the wall area.
Stark paired the cabinetry with Mystera Rainforest solid surface countertops from Hudson Surfaces’ Terrascape product group. He feels that “the deep green color and veining of the countertops fits into the new Miami style.”
He further used subtle design details that not only anchor this style, but also reflect Miami’s Art Deco roots. For instance, he points to the long, stainless steel hardware pulls from Richelieu, and the glass tile accents seen in the backsplash and in the custom hood by Prestige Cabinets and concealed liner that sits above the Frigidaire FEF336BC range. Those same glass accents – which were originally part of a meshed tile pattern – match the ribbed glass doors in the cabinet between the kitchen and dining room.
Warm halogen pendant lighting provides drama in rich color, while several strategically placed recessed can lights provide function, adds Stark. “The pendant lighting, in particular, highlights the richly veined, natural-stone look of the solid surface countertop and brings the whole area to life,” he notes.
In terms of appliances, Stark kept it simple. In addition to the range and hood, he installed a dishwasher and KitchenAid KSRD22FK-SS refrigerator. And last, but not least, a faucet and a stainless steel, double, undermount Sterling/Kohler Co. sink round out the design.
- The original design of this kitchen was dark and closed in with poorly used space. By opening two areas, the kitchen takes on a more spacious feeling and adds drama to the entranceway. It also allows lots of natural light to flood the new design.
- The new design also allowed designer/owner Steve Stark, CKD to include a 36”-high table/peninsula in the space.
- Once the layout was opened up, the designer/owner, Steve Stark, CKD, wanted to infuse the 156-sq.-ft. kitchen with a warm, contemporary feeling while paying subtle homage to Miami. He used a combination of warm tile, countertop and lighting. Paired with the warm, dark wood grain of the hickory Prestige cabinetry, this creates a look that he feels represents the new Miami style.
- Stark also used subtle design details that not only anchor this style, but also reflect Miami’s Art Deco roots. For instance, he points to the long, stainless steel hardware pulls from Richelieu, and the glass tile accents seen in the backsplash.
- Warm halogen pendant lighting provides drama, while several strategically placed recessed can lights add function.
- Products include: Georgetown cabinetry from Prestige Cabinets in hickory wood with a Paprika finish; long, stainless steel hardware pulls from Richelieu; Blumotion drawer glides from Blum, Inc.; a custom hood by Prestige Cabinets; a concealed liner; a Frigidaire FEF336BC range; a KitchenAid KSRD22FK-SS refrigerator; a dishwasher; Mystera Rainforest (green, veined, natural-look) solid surface countertops from Hudson Surfaces’ Terrascape product group; a tumbled travertine marble backsplash; glass tile backsplash accents; 19”, square, porcelain ceramic floor tiles; a stainless steel, double, undermount Sterling/Kohler Co. sink; a faucet; glass halogen pendants; and several recessed can lights.