Kitchens can make or break the look of any type of home, especially when it comes to a loft in the city. With only so much space to work with, it can be a challenging task to create a kitchen area that is stylish and welcoming. This San Francisco kitchen by Muratore Corp Cabinet Shop, has been completely renovated to provide a modern, warm, and inviting style in which to eat and hold social gatherings. When it first started out, this kitchen was underneath the loft, leaving little area to maneuver. Both functionality and style were extremely constrained because of the tiny area. However, with the renovation moving the kitchen to the former living room, which provided double the height and an open floor plan, the beginnings of a stunning kitchen was in the making.
This kitchen received a more modern, industrial treatment with steel lining much of the appearance. It covers over the cabinets which rise from the floor to the ceiling, the island, and the wooden structural posts. The cabinets are actually wooden cabinets, to prevent noisy clamor unlike full steel cabinets would produce. After the cabinets were made, steel panels covered them to provide the industrial look it has now. It gave the kitchen a clean look, and also produced a dark, yet warm atmosphere which generally promotes a relaxed and comforting ambiance. This answered the homeowner’s wants, and he greatly enjoyed the style for his own personal use, so the steel plating is an absolute hit.
Structurally, the construction and design company had their work cut out for them. The loft lacked wall space so the kitchen was attached to two brick columns with added metal bars stretching from the ceiling to the cabinets for the extra necessary support. With the appliances taking up the most of the space, which included a double oven and tall refrigerator, a “bridge” with upper cabinets had to be installed. This bridge was accessible by a movable letter that latched onto a metal bar that wrapped itself around the steel plated cabinets. While this kitchen was designed with the focus more on style than functionality, the ladder and constantly climbing for needed storage seems cumbersome. The repetitiveness of moving the ladder out of the way from where you need to work next would be tiresome, but if this homeowner could handle it, kudos to him. Aesthetically, the upper cabinets looks stellar, sleek, and modern, adding to the style the homeowner was looking for. The cubbies also helped to fill the void that such a tall ceiling leaves, making the kitchen and loft feel fuller.
The island is where this design team was truly able to fit modern styled art with functionality. Having the sink, dishwasher, and pullout garbage connected to the island allowed for more space to maneuver and freedom from the crowded kitchen wall. Personally, the island seems to be the focal point of the kitchen. With extra cabinet and drawer space, the island is the home of the kitchen and is the most inviting place in the entire loft. Topped with a dark, yet warm marble, the island is an amazing place to hang out around and converse. The island is really where all the action is. Food preparation, cutting, slicing and dicing starts here, and when ready to eat, it serves as a dining area bar. It is 42 inches deep and plenty long enough to prepare food for several people. The island also has purely aesthetic wheels at the bottom of it, giving off the illusion it could roll away.
This island is lovely and not only extremely stylish but plenty functional as well. The marble gives a warm feel to the whole loft and brings the kitchen full circle. The only grievance to be found because of personal preference is the industrial, riveted look it possesses. Although the overall style was meant to be as such, the rivets simply do not add anything to the design, personally. Once again, this kitchen was made for the style of the homeowner and his sense of style trumps all.
The natural light that is offered by the huge windows in the loft add to the pleasurable aesthetics of the overall appearance of the kitchen. These windows endured a few modifications that greatly enhanced the functionality of not only the kitchen, but also the entire loft. Magnetic shades on the lowest pane of the windows help to prevent prying eyes from seeing inside the loft. The windows also have mechanical roller shades that can cover the entire windows to provide some protection from the glaring sun or enhance the privacy of the loft. The window mullions were also painted dark to guide the eyes toward the beautiful outside view.
What this design team did with the windows truly enriched the appearance of the kitchen and was a major improvement to the flood of natural light that would normally envelop the area. The steel plating and the lighting play nicely off of each other and produce a comfortable ambiance. Overall, the developments to the windows was some of the best work done to the entire kitchen.
Although the oak hardwood flooring was beautiful before the renovation, in order to provide plumbing to the island, the design team had to rip it up. The replacement chosen was concrete. This was an interesting choice. Concrete in this style kitchen works well though, complementing the steel plating that surrounds the kitchen. However, concrete gives off a cold feeling, contrasting with the overall warm tone felt throughout the rest of the kitchen. Personally, installing hardwood oak floors again would have been the best option. However, the concrete is still a great touch and overall achieves the same purpose that hardwood would have.
All in all, this is a monumental upgrade from the former kitchen and brings a brand new industrial look to this loft. The aesthetic value and modern style cannot be denied as to its effectiveness and inviting mood. The kitchen’s functionality is limited, but with an amazing island and an overall warm, comfortable ambiance, there is a lot that pleases the eye in this urban, sleek, and modern style San Francisco loft kitchen.
photography: Scott Hargis