Kitchens for Entertaining
What should you consider when planning a bespoke kitchen for entertaining in? Firstly, think about the kitchen layout, an island or peninsula layout works best. A kitchen island is a great for zoning the space as it allows the cook the space to work. Yet an island is a sociable area where guests can sit. To make a cohesive kitchen space that works for entertaining as well as cooking, aim to make visual links between each ‘zone’. Choose similar kitchen cabinetry in each space, or the same open shelving in both the kitchen and the living area. Lighting is key. Use pendants over islands for informal gatherings. Weighted kitchen lights can be raised or lowered to create the ambience you want, and over dining tables in the entertaining space. Colour is also a good device for linking separate zones, use it to define each area.
Which kitchen materials?
If the kitchen is part of a bigger space, then pay particular attention to kitchen materials. Those on the ‘working side’ of the kitchen should be more practical than those that lead on to the wider space. These can be softer with a warmer feel. For example, a kitchen island could have two ‘halves’ with the cooking side utilising a practical surface and the outward facing side in a more glamorous ‘furniture like’ finish.
Which kitchen appliances?
Think also about appliances that would suit this type of design best. As so many kitchens feature a large island, this can house anything from a wok hob or a teppanyaki cooking surface, to a wine cooler or a warming drawer. This means that the cook can be at the centre of things, creating a sense of theatre at the heart of the kitchen. An eye-level dishwasher makes clearing up easier too.
Another thing to consider is that a hob on an island is always more preferable than a sink, as sinks can be quite a cluttered area. Often the hob is where the last part of cooking takes place, so the cook can be part of the activities, with the bonus that pots and pans on a hob can be quickly cleared to a sink or dishwasher elsewhere.
Consider the wider kitchen space
Consider how you move around the space. The flow of a kitchen from a working point of view is critical, it has to be functional. The flow should not be so great that guests end up where you are working. If space allows it’s always nice to have a breakfast area with a larder nearby so that children or guests can help themselves. Likewise a drinks cabinet away from the main hub of kitchen activity, is a good idea. This is where drinks can be dispensed without interfering with the cooking.
Other clever kitchen tips Kitchen furniture needs to look as good as it can, as it often extends into, and becomes part of the general living and entertaining space. Be adventurous with kitchen materials. You can be practical but also choose beautiful finishes that make your kitchen look and feel like beautiful furniture so that the everything blends in beautifully.