Modern Kitchen for a Pro

Architect Barney Maier designs a contemporary kitchen for a professional chef that's functional and has plenty of storage.
Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

An island with cooktop and secondary sink, placed close to the dishwasher and wall ovens, creates a practical cooking/clean-up zone with the refrigerator smartly set apart to keep work zones separated. Another goal was to have a place to perform culinary demonstrations

From: Barney Maier
and Barney Maier

Photo by: Eric Roth

Eric Roth

By: Barbara Ballinger
From: Barney Maier

Architect Barney Maier of Peter Feinmann, Inc. has to maximize limited space available to create a pro-quality kitchen in Lexington, Mass. For splashes of color in the neutral kitchen, he incorporates shades of blue in the backsplash, countertops and drawer knobs.

Describe the homeowners' wishlist.

The goals were to maximize the rear view of the home, improve kitchen functionality and to enlarge and update the space, especially creating a center island where cooking demos could be held.

Contemporary and Functional Kitchen

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Smart, Practical Island

An island with cooktop and secondary sink, placed close to the dishwasher and wall ovens, creates a practical cooking/clean-up zone with the refrigerator smartly set apart to keep work zones separated. Another goal was to have a place to perform culinary demonstrations. Photography by Eric Roth

From: Barney Maier and Barney Maier

Photo By: Eric Roth

Stunning Backsplash

A mosaic picture behind the main sink adds a decorative note in the expanded kitchen; countertops are a charcoal Cambria with blue flecks that blends. Photography by Eric Roth

From: Barney Maier

Photo By: Eric Roth

Decorative Shelves

Open shelves permit display and see-through views; the maple has a natural finish. Photography by Eric Roth

From: Barney Maier

Photo By: Eric Roth

Casual Eatery

An eating nook with the other side of the see-through display shelves turns a breakfast area into a place that can function for more substantial, even company meals. Views of the backyard were another criteria when the kitchen was expanded. Photography by Eric Roth

From: Barney Maier

Photo By: Eric Roth

What were the homeowners' design problems?

A few challenges included the staggered roofline of the split-level home, wetlands that created a limited amount of buildable space, and finally, providing functionality and storage the client desired.

What was your biggest obstacle in this space?

Because of wetlands, expansion was limited to 99 square feet. Creative space planning — borrowing some square footage from an existing deck, for instance, fulfilled the design requirements.

How does the end result match up with your original vision?

There were no real concept changes. The only aspect that changed was extending the staircase railing to the lower level.

What lessons did you learn?

How adding very little square footage can make a huge impact on a space. It made the kitchen much more functional and attractive than before. We have had other kitchens with even less square footage added or worked within an existing footprint, and it is a challenging design dilemma that we like to solve. Also, the wetlands/setback issues taught us about working with conservation groups and the town effectively and knowing what to do in similar situations in the future.

What are the "hidden gems"?

The mosaic tile backsplash with blue theme prevalent throughout. The island countertop is Charston by Cambria, a charcoal quartzite with iridescent flecks of blue. The blue cabinet knobs and glass-paneled cabinets. The large windows with transoms overlooking the beautiful backyard and then the addition of the brise soleil outside over the new windows to mitigate the heat from the sun. The glass canopied Bosch exhaust hood does not obstruct the new view to the rear of the house.

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Barney Maier

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Peter Feinmann, Inc.
www.feinmann.com RA 27 Muzzey Street Lexington, MA 02421 781-860-9800