Though the owners of this renovated kitchen dwell in a Craftsman-style house, their imaginations had been captured by Modernism. So when it came time to renovate their smallish kitchen, they turned to architect Bob Gurney to design a contemporary room that would blend comfortably with their home.

By removing a few walls, Gurney transformed the original cramped kitchen, lost in the center of the house, into the hub of the home. The new kitchen stretches to fill an awkward, oversized hall that was wasted space and in the process gains more interaction with the family room and dining room. A small closet behind the kitchen was expanded to accommodate a pantry and small catering kitchen.

Gurney chose a neutral palette of dark oak cabinets, aluminum detailing, and laminated glass backsplashes for a simple, contemporary look that neither complements nor competes with the rest of the house. Uninterrupted maple floors and a continuous ceiling connect the kitchen with the rest of the house. The kitchen's dramatic anchor is a long, dark oak island topped with Calcutta gold marble.

The big challenge of this project was to keep the kitchen open to the family room while giving the clients the means to control noise between the two spaces. The judges liked Gurney's solution: floor-to-ceiling glass doors that pivot 360 degrees. The custom black-steel framed doors swing easily on ball-bearing hardware and give the owners unlimited ways to arrange the doors.

Project Credits
Robert M. Gurney, FAIA, Architect, Alexandria, Va.
Builder: SugarOak Inc., Herndon, Va.
Engineer: Tony Beale, Springfield, Va.
Interior designer: Therese Baron Gurney, ASID, Washington, D.C.
Kitchen consultant: Alison Tilley, Bulthaup Corp., Washington, D.C.
Project size: 600 square feet
Construction cost: Withheld
Photographer: Paul Burk Photography

Resources: Countertops/ kitchen cabinets: Bulthaup; Dishwasher: Gaggenau; Garbage disposer: Kitchen Aid; Kitchen plumbing fittings/fixtures: Bulthaup and Franke; Oven: Gaggenau; Patio doors: Weathershield; Refrigerator: Sub-Zero.