minarc, santa monica, calif.

The owner of this penthouse pied-à-terre overlooking the Atlantic Ocean uses it primarily to entertain business colleagues. To that end, Erla Dögg Ingjaldsdóttir, AIA, Assoc. IIDA, and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, Assoc. AIA, created a dramatic, disappearing kitchen that works equally well for meetings or dinners. “It has everything you need in a kitchen—dishwasher, refrigerator, stove, coffee machine—but it's all hidden,” Ingjaldsdóttir explains. The multipurpose island, for example, conceals four custom stools with backs that mimic file cabinets. Push the stools in and the island morphs from conference table to sleek, stand-up bar. Along the room's textured stone wall, a flip-up section of stainless steel counter reveals a recessed sink and cooktop. That same countertop flows seamlessly into handles for cabinets containing the fridge and other built-in appliances.

“It's a new way to interpret urban kitchens,” one judge raved, while another simply liked how the kitchen “does really cool things.”

principal in charge / project architect: Erla Dögg Ingjaldsdóttir, AIA, Assoc. IIDA, Minarc;
principal in charge / project designer: Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, Assoc. AIA, Minarc;
project size: 1,200 square feet;
construction cost: Withheld;
photography: Courtesy Minarc.

product specs
coffee maker, cooktop: Miele; countertops: DuPont (Corian); dishwasher: Fisher & Paykel Appliances; oven/range: Gaggenau USA/Canada; refrigerator: Bosch USA