What Makes an Award-Winning Kitchen?

From splashy architectural design magazine spreads to national TV shows to online competitions, the idea of an award-winning kitchen is one that fascinates everyone from armchair decorators to the most sophisticated designers worldwide.

But what makes an award-winning kitchen? The answers may surprise you.

“A best-of-show kitchen is more than simply fantastic materials and exceptional appliances,” explains Agostino Fede, owner of NOLI. “It is a design that creates a uniquely beautiful space that flows toward light—whether it inspires movement from one interior space to another, or from the interior to the exterior of the home.” To accomplish this seamless experience, consider the following elements to incorporate into your next kitchen redesign.

A modern Italian kitchen by NOLI

A thoughtful design customized for your family’s needs

The most important element of your kitchen redesign is ultimately, how well it will work for you and your family. As a result, the biggest key to creating the perfect kitchen is ensuring that you work closely with your designer to plan the space. Questions to consider include, how often do you entertain? How many people should the kitchen seat on an average night? And, importantly, how many cooks are there in the house?

Knowing who will be working, eating and enjoying the kitchen during all stages of food preparation and dining or throughout the day will help ensure your kitchen is a place of harmony and rejuvenation for years to come.

A kitchen that utilizes natural light

An intentional use of light

Lighting can make or break a kitchen. It’s so critical, it should be the first consideration, prior to structural design, materials, or appliances. It’s not as simple as ensuring the space is bright, either. While targeted task lighting is a must for the detailed work of food preparation, you also need softer, ambient lighting for your guests to toast you at the end of a perfect meal. During the day, natural lighting should flood the space—while at night, your lighting options should feel warm and approachable.

Intuitive appliances

Intuitive, high-performing appliances

If you’re upgrading your kitchen, it’s wise to choose appliances that are easy to understand at a glance, but that also provide an exceptional experience both during meal preparation and in terms of the final product. Work closely with your design partner and discuss in depth the types of cooking and baking you enjoy, the full variety of entertaining you expect to do, and the number of guests you plan to serve, whether for every-day meals or during special events.

Expansive countertops

Spacious countertops, shelving and cabinetry using natural materials

An award-winning kitchen should delight the eye and calm the mind—a state that’s only possible if there is adequate hidden shelving to allow for open, uncluttered space. In addition, richly textured or sleekly elegant natural finishes can provide the perfect touch to your cabinetry. And don’t forget the kitchen island! Now a staple in most well-designed kitchens, your island should provide smart solutions to meet your specific needs, from built-in storage and appliances to extended countertops for dining and conversation.

A kitchen the connects to an outdoor living space

A connection to the outdoors

Whether you are taking advantage of an extraordinary view, seeking to link the kitchen to an exterior living or dining space or simply wish to maximize the amount of natural light in your kitchen, finding a way to connect to the outdoors is critical. Large, uncluttered windows, skylights or making the decision to open the flow of your kitchen space to other areas of the house are all options that bring you closer to the outdoors.

Looking for more ideas? NOLI has recently completed a full showroom renovation to bring the latest in kitchen and architectural interiors to life. For a private appointment to discuss your next redesign project, Contact NOLI, today.

Celebrate Italian design, discover lifestyle tips, and learn about the additional services we offer. 

Confirmation email sent!