The kitchen is the heart of the home. A well-designed kitchen makes cooking and eating an everyday pleasure. An eat-in table often doubles as the location for homework and craft projects. Family time and interaction with friends is enhanced and encouraged through thoughtful design solutions. A sense of warm, fuzzy “community” can be established there, inviting participation and cultivating memorable experiences.
Today’s kitchen can be very sustainable. Incorporating the newest technology can reduce consumption of natural resources including energy, water and trees. Substantially more efficient appliances, ventilation and lighting have become available. Induction heating is likely to replace gas as it is even more responsive, and more energy efficient. As a healthier alternative to microwaves, in-counter and in-wall steamers can regenerate, defrost, steam cook and boil foods, retaining most nutrients. Ergonomic advances like hydrolics make cooking areas more easily accessible. New “Green” materials for cabinetry and surfaces are being introduced. We can expect a kitchen built today to last 15 or more years.
The current interest in home-grown food, organic food and nourishment have changed the thinking about kitchen design too. Authenticity of ingredients are desirable both as building materials and sustenance, enhancing wellbeing, health and longevity. New equipment makes composting and re-cycling easier, hence more appealing. LED greenhouse lighting and hydroponics may lead the way to in-kitchen gardens.
All of this is just becoming available state side. As it becomes more general use, prices should fall making these advances more available to everyone. The kitchens below were designed before these advances, but I’m keeping up to date on every new alternative and ready to use the knowledge I’ve gathered.