Monday, January 11, 2010

An English Tudor Adds a Conservatory Kitchen

I adore English Tudors. I wanted so badly to live in one when I moved this last time (our ninth move!). But, we had a short window of time and none were for sale that would work with our family. We ended up buying a lovely 1930's Royal Barry Wills Center Hall Colonial. Beautiful and historic, but my heart still belongs to the Tudors.
A common complaint is that they are dark. Yes, the smaller windows, sloping ceilings and dark wood can make them feel dark, but I find with the right decor and some modifications they can be sunny, beautiful, and very cozy.
Still, I hold fast to my dream that some day I may own an English Tudor. I follow the MLS listings and am always on the watch for ideas and inspiration. So imagine my delight when I saw this new Conservatory Kitchen Addition on this wonderful 1920's Tudor by Barnes Vanze Architects. The owner, a professional chef, wanted to add light to the home and have a "summer style" kitchen. They wanted the addition to have a true garden feel. The result is a beautiful space which incorporates all the conveniences needed for a professional chef and a tremendous amount of natural light which floods into adjoining rooms.
The center island is large and great for food prep, as well as entertaining, while the host prepares the meal. It is made of antique, reclaimed chestnut and has refrigeration drawers built into it. Additionally the owners wanted a dining table in the space and a banquette seating/lounge area. Notice the professional stove and striking hood with copper accents. I also like how they used furniture with the cabinetry. Notice how some of the furniture has strong colors so it doesn't disappear in such a large space.
The iron and glass shelves were custom designed and forged especially for their space. There are no over head cabinets. Notice the detail around the window and the ceiling - spectacular! I also love the soapstone sink and gray/green cabinet color.
The actual building lot dropped off in the back so the owners were able to create a room beneath the Conservatory. The new space houses a wine cellar, bath and media room. It also allowed the owners to create a new patio/entertaining area.
This is excellent example of how the right addition on an older home can completely transform it. Read more about the architects and the fabulous renovation here.


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