Trying to plan for a kitchen renovation today is a difficult endeavour. You could have a basic kitchen with a beautiful countertop and call it a day. You could also spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on all the bells and whistles but would they all make you happy? I’m sharing my favourite must have items for a luxury kitchen with you and you can decide which are a must and which are a pass.
MUST HAVE ITEMS FOR A LUXURY KITCHEN
This isn’t a simple case of do I want it or not. Obviously you need the space but if you have it, why would you ever pass on it? A walk-in pantry hides away ugly cereal and cracker boxes. It also gives you the ability to store away items that are for entertaining as well as those seasonal pieces you only need once or twice a year. You don’t want to part with them but without a walk-in pantry where the heck do you put these things.
PANEL READY APPLIANCES
This is an elegant and sophisticated upgrade for your kitchen. They’re a lot more common now than when they first made their debut on the design scene. They originally got specified mostly for traditional homes but now they’ve been embraced into every style from traditional to modern. They can give a very serene, calm feeling to a kitchen because there’s no visual stop and start as your eye scans the room. These are a luxury though and there is definitely an upcharge to including them in your design. So for now, they’re still a splurge.
Whenever possible, it’s recommended that you include three sources of lighting into a room – general, task and accent. Accent is a highly overlooked source both from a functional and decorative perspective. In my home I added accent lighting over the kitchen shelving. I love the extra detail in the space but it’s also a great source of light in the evening. When my family is finished cooking and cleaning for the day the lights are turned off except for this one. When I wander in for a tea or a late-night snack it’s nice to have a bit of light guiding the way.
INSET CABINET DOORS
Inset doors sit flush with the frame of the cabinet as opposed to sitting on top of the frame. The hinges can be either exposed or concealed, depending on the look of your space. Door hardware is not just aesthetic in this case but since the door is completely flush with the frame, you need to rely on the hardware for opening the cabinet doors. These do cost significantly more than conventional cabinet doors but the sleek aesthetic might be worth the investment in your new kitchen.
SOURCE: Devol Kitchens
HIGH QUALITY COUNTERTOP MATERIALS
There are trends that come and go in countertop materials but one thing that’s always consistent is the use of solid surface materials. It doesn’t necessarily have to be natural. These days quartz is the premium go-to product. It’s made of natural quartz but it has polymers added to create the end product. While granite has taken a back seat for the moment, it’s still a great choice. Marble and concrete are more high maintenance but they’re both beautiful options.
Just as important to the end result is the countertop profile. There are plenty of options to select from but take your time and make sure that your edge profile matches the style of your kitchen for the best results.
COLUMN FRIDGE AND FREEZER
This is a luxury but it’s only possible if you have a large kitchen and can get what you need while giving up that extra square footage. If you’ve never seen this before, you get a full-sized fridge and freezer living side-by-side in beautiful harmony. If you have a family or love to entertain this is a worthwhile splurge. You can see from the image below just how much space you’ll need to allocate to have this beauty in your kitchen. If you’re planning a renovation go grab my free Budget Guide. It’s a free document to help you calculate the cost of everything included in a renovation
If you find yourself running a half empty dishwasher often then this is a luxury you need to include. Two drawers mean you can run just one of them and let the other accumulate dishes for an extra day or two. It’s also great for people who love to use crystal or something special that you’d like to keep separate from all other items. You can sort out how these function for your lifestyle.
TOUCH ACTIVATED FAUCET
These faucets are activated by a sensor when you touch, even lightly, anywhere on the faucet. It gives a steady flow of water and then shuts off once the sensor notices you have moved away. The most obvious benefit is that you prevent an accumulation of dirt and mess on the handle of the faucet. There’s an added bonus of saving water because rather than just endlessly running, the touch activation will only run for limited time and then shut off. This is great if you have kids who forget to turn off the tap when they’re finished washing hands.
HIDDEN HOOD FAN
Not all appliances are attractive but at the top of the not-attractive pile would be the hood fan. They’re definitely necessary and without them our homes would smell like yesterday’s fish but they’re an eye sore. A concealed fan is a luxury worth the splurge!
SEPARATE BEER AND WINE FRIDGE
If you have a regular fridge, it can be annoying to try and figure out how to maximize the storage to allow for your food as well as your beverages. Not to mention, there’s usually limited vertical space so if you’re drinking white or rose wine, space is limited. A separate under counter wine fridge will take up the same space as a set of drawers. If you have room in another part of your house for a separate beer fridge, even better. If not, you can dedicate half of the wine fridge to beer. The fact that they have separate temperature controls means you can keep your beer icy cold and the wine at whatever temperature suits your preference.
QUALITY CABINET HARDWARE
When you look at the cost of high-end cabinet hardware it might seem reasonable enough. It’s the fact that you need multiples that ends up turning it into a splurge. If you’re someone who places a value on accessorizing, I recommend of all the items for a luxury kitchen this is the one for you. It’s the jewelry in your kitchen and going with a luxury pull and knob will be the most satisfying upgrade for you.
It’s not just the what but the where in this case. A built-in microwave keeps your sightlines clear and removes clutter from countertops, top of fridge, etc. A built-in microwave keeps it tucked away nicely and lines up with the front of the cabinetry. If you can, build it into the island. This is out of sight altogether and doesn’t mess up the beautiful cabinetry you’ve just installed.
This is a chef’s delight! If you love to cook and make a lot of pasta, lobster or steam a lot of veggies you know how heavy those pots can be. Even going a short distance from a sink to the stove can be difficult with a full and heavy pot of water. Pot fillers are installed on the wall behind the stove. They’re high enough not to interfere with your cooking but they’re ready for you when a full pot of water is required. No travelling required.
HIDDEN TRASH AND RECYCLING
There’s no way around this one. Trash cans are ugly and if you don’t have a pantry, it’s a struggle to know where to put them. If you use the area under your sink you steal from the valuable real estate needed for kitchen cleaning supplies. Adding hidden pullouts for trash and recycling keeps everything tidy. It gives you plenty of storage for both so they don’t have to be emptied every day.
SPEED CONVECTION OVEN
The best of all worlds. The speed oven is, as the name implies, quicker than a conventional oven but it offers more than just speed. It is a combo of both a convection oven and a microwave. It would allow you to get rid of the microwave altogether. These are usually designed to be wall ovens so you’ll need to plan early for this one.
You definitely have enough items for a luxury kitchen here to pick from but I’d love to hear from you on this. Which ones do you think you’d use and is there anything I missed?