DING!! Round Two. Kitchen in beach house, help improve layout

angela12345June 21, 2013

(note: links & pictures open in new windows)

Some of you "know" me. I've been hanging around GW for almost 10 years now.

Almost 3 years ago our longtime dream came true and we were able to start construction on a second home/vacation rental home(link) at the beach. We rent it whenever we can, and we stay there sometimes when it is not rented, usually on the weekends during the winter. Most of the time doing work on the house, haha.

It was completed in time for summer rentals to start in 2011, so we are now starting our 3rd rental season. Rentals have been fabulous and (for the most part) our guests have been awesome. We won't talk about the renter who poured shampoo(what!!) in the hot tub, or the one whose kids dumped buckets of sand in the hot tub, or the guest whose grandson was horsing around and pulled the curved glass shower door off the track and shattered it into a zillion pieces. A glass door that now cannot be replaced because the mfg has stopped making that model of shower. (No children were harmed in this incident) Or the myriad of other small and some not as small things that have gone wrong or broken. We have learned a lot.

After all of our hard work, we could not believe this dream came true. Now, we have the opportunity to build again, going in partner with my father. We just started our preliminary house designs about 2 weeks ago. And we are just as excited, like a kid in a candy store, as we were last time. Whooooo !!!

This new home will be a rental home, with guests typically there for 1 week at a time during June July August, with some additional rentals during spring and fall. This home will sleep 20+ (up to 28 including pullout sofas, trundle beds, and toddler mattresses). The kitchen will need to accomodate a lot of different types of rental groups and sizes ... small groups and large groups, families with multiple generations & kids, adults only/couples groups, all men (golfers), maybe weddings or church groups, etc. And occasionally just my Dad or just DH & me.

We need to include 2 fridges and 2 dishwashers because of the need for it for groups this size. We also plan to have a Whirlpool double oven range(link), which we have at our other house and it works out great.
We use the top oven more than anything
Bottom oven was large enough for the Thanksgiving turkey with no problem !!

Most likely, I will not be able to make any changes to the walls of the kitchen on this plan or the size of the kitchen. Windows can be moved.

Aisles shown are counter edge to counter edge assuming 2" overhang on 24" base cabinets. The current plan as shown includes two 30" wide recessed top freezer/fridges, a "step in" pantry, 14-15" deep upper cabinets, 42-45" tall upper cabinets (9ft ceilings), double oven range, empty space in the lower blind corner between the trash pullout and range.

The one level island is shown as 41"x56" which includes 24x36 cabinet with 10" overhang on each side, 15" on back side, and allows for 2" counter overhang on front side. The side overhangs are to allow a stool to be pulled around to each side for additional seating when needed. Stools stored elsewhere when not in use (as shown to left side of kitchen in pic above : ). Dining tables can be pulled apart to seat 4 additional when needed.

Please help with suggestions on our kitchen design !!!!

note: For those interested, this is the link to our original kitchen thread for the house we already built. Fair warning: it is a looong thread. This kitchen & the whole upstairs is SO much better than it would have been without the generous help of many many Gardenweb TKO's. Everytime we are at the house, I think of you & thank you all. http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/kitchbath/msg102315435043.html

(edited for typos & a couple forgotten details)

This post was edited by angela12345 on Wed, Jun 26, 13 at 14:01

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tough to respond because of the nature of the dwelling. Just from my experience in being a landlord , also from renting in various resort areas, this may be beyond critical mass which I think is about 8 people[adults]...beyond that, a group would create smaller units of people within their group to rent separate dwellings or units.A vacationing group of 2-4 people would seek a place that sleeps 2-4, and 4-6 people would jump up to a unit that sleeps up to 8. The thought of 20 plus people necessitates something else entirely..... 2 kitchens/butlers pantry/ or at minimum- multiple zones for multiple cooks. Fair comments about what you are embarking is difficult because this is peculiar-are you getting advice from rental management professionals in this area.....

    Bookmark   June 22, 2013 at 10:29PM
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My large family gets together often and we rent via VRBO. Have stayed 20 people in a one-bathroom with bunk-house all the way to 8 bedrooms with 5 baths. We typically have several cooks in the kitchen at once, some prepping, one at the stove and one washing dishes as we go.

I'm not going to pretend to be a kitchen designer, but I would add another prep sink in the island. Take out the seating and move it forward toward the dining room. We would use a second cook-top far more than a second DW. We can run the DW after every meal and it will hold dishes for 20. The cooking area is always busy and could use more burners/space.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 8:28AM
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LOL, herbflavor ... just looking at VRBO and the 3 largest rental agencies on our island only (not including nearby islands, or any of the smaller agencies), there are over 160 houses that sleep 18 or more, and 10 of those sleep 26-32.

The first 2 images below are the kitchen of a 12 bedroom house that sleeps 32. The next 3 images are the kitchen of our house we built a couple years ago that sleeps 22-29 (click pics for bigger views). I know our kitchen works well because I have stayed there many times with large groups. We even had 32 for Thanksgiving lunch and 20 who spent that whole weekend Wed-Sun. Most/many of our guests have had groups of 20-26, but also we had a group just last week that was a family of 9 (grandparents, their 2 kids & spouses, and 3 grandkids).

I guess what I am saying is, if it is a well designed Gardenweb kitchen in a well designed house, with places for people to get together as a whole group and also to get away from each other in smaller groups, it works. Remember, this is only for one week, usually extended family groups on vacation. And, not everyone is in the kitchen at one time. In my experience, just the moms, haha. I would guess 3-5 working in the kitchen at one time at the most.

I have also stayed in homes where the kitchen does NOT work. Like this one, for example, the 2 dishwashers are across the aisle from each other so you can't open both at the same time, they hit each other. The fridge doors hit the island when open unless they are pushed all the way back and then they just barely miss it. The location of the prep sink is basically useless. The aisle is too narrow on the working side and too wide on the other side of the island. This house sleeps 24. Everything else about the house other than the kitchen is awesome !

Cindy, another prep sink ... so a total of 3 sinks ?
Although, I don't think removing the island seating is an option. As it is, the dining table only seats 12 (or 16 when pulled apart), so we are short on seating already. What kind of groups are you guys normally composed of ? Typically how many in the kitchen at a time ? Sounds like 3 ? I hear you on the extra burners ! At our already built house we have ways to cook away from the stove as well, for example a griddle so someone can be making pancakes away from the stovetop.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 7:50PM
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Move the prep sink to the island and eliminate the overhang on the two working island sides. There's not enough room for seating there, plus it looks rather spindly and top heavy as is.

The thing that I might add is a beverage bar area outside the kitchen proper. Maybe under the dining windows by just extending the counter down to the door outside? Can't see the rest of the floorplan to see any other alternatives, but having the third entertaining sink more in the actual entertaining space would go a long way to making the home host that many people successfully.

On vacation, do people really do that much cooking? (I don't, and I really enjoy cooking.) Grilling out, yes, but actual cooking around a range in a kitchen? I'd really be surprised if that were the case. And that's why I'd consider doing a lesser indoor kitchen and devoting some of the resources to doing a nice outside kitchen. With water and refrigeration there. And a nice grill.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2013 at 4:42PM
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We have rented homes on the Outer Banks for years, so I think I have an understanding of the market although we've never rented a home for more than 12.

I would like to see the whole house plan.

To be honest, right now it looks like this kitchen and dining area is really small for a house with a max occ. of 28. I actually am used to seeing much larger islands or peninsulas with at least 6 stools for "kid dining" in homes of this size and more often up to 10. I do like the idea of the 2 square tables being able to split for more seating. Is there a screened dining porch somewhere as well? Often additional seating is provided in that way.

The island you have now can really only seat 2, and your aisles are relatively small considering it will be a multi-cook kitchen (of course not everyone, but likely 3 or 4 moms trying to get it all together for a large gang). I'm trying to imagine working in there with my own mother or my sister in law or even my best friend, and it doesn't look comfortable. Of course, we put up with inefficiencies when on vacation, but the fewer the better.

I agree with the 2nd bar area. Even though we've only rented homes designed to fit half as many as this one, if not smaller, almost all have had bar areas (sometimes on a different floor). Not only does that keep the drink makers out of the kitchen, but it can also be a secondary location for preparing snacks and sandwiches.

However, I still think the overall size of the kitchen is too small for the house, but need to see a plan to really understand it.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2013 at 5:47PM
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In answer to your question on the other thread (Buehl's re why few comments), I can answer why I haven't replied to you, yet.

1) This was a very hectic weekend for me because we had planned a beekeeper's workshop at our farm and we were flat out until Sunday night when it was over, then flat out (resting) the next day or so. (Luckily, we managed to successfully nab three formerly barn-living swarms of honey bees, too!)

2) It wasn't the quality of the drawing, it's clear and easily readable.

3) I think I was sort of floored by the idea of planning a kitchen for 20-28 people. (I'm a family of just two.)

4) Honestly, given the space you have allotted for the kitchen, I think you've got problems. For instance a working aisle of 42" is not really enough for thinking of having two people working, back to back, on opposing work surfaces. It's hardly enough for two people to pass each other, pots in hand, without a lot of "excuse me's" .

5 a) I am not a fan of island seating within spitting distance of the dining room table, even though I know that's a popular current style. I don't think you have room for three stools.

5 b) Additional thought as I was previewing: For the island seating position, could you have the overhang a fold-down or pullout- for-use one? That way when dealing with a large crowd it could be left un-deployed as you'd need counters more than seating positions. But when you have a smaller group, the dining chairs on the kitchen side could be left tucked closely in to the table and the stools brought out, counter flipped up, and then you have a two-person counter eating set-up.

6) Can you shrink the island into more a working and serving surface? Add 3 -6" to each aisle dimension around it.

7) I question whether a range of that size (even with two stacked ovens) will be sufficient for 2 dozen people. I realize that nobody will be cooking Thanksgiving with all the trimmings at this house, but still that's only four burners, right?

8) Do you need all that much pantry, esp. a step-in variety? You'll need food staples, paper goods, larger pots and pans for big group cooking, but it's not like you'll be storing a whole kitchen's worth of food because people are expected to BYO, right?

9) Do you really need two fridges, or would one wider one work? What I'm trying to find for you is some room for a single, hang out and chat with the cook stool position. Thought I could steal some space by shrinking fridge to one, bigger, model and have a smaller, pull-out, pantry.

  1. Just a thought- could you work with a second fridge, but one that is accessed from the other side of the wall (it's back would be to the kitchen). Perhaps you could park it in the dead zone of the corner (where lazy susans are often put). Then have a pull out pantry next to it (facing kitchen aisle) and the fridge and stool. The "hall-facing" fridge - at least I assume it's a hall there - could be for drinks and snacks, which I think in vac. house would be a huge deal. That leaves the kitchen one for actual food and keeps snack-grazers out of the work area. ("Back of the White Line!")

Finally, on the plus side, you have already arrived at what I think of as a near-perfect, food-flow-through-kitchen design. Major kudos for that - it's my perennial pre-occupation with nearly every design posted here. I'm always bringing it up. But you've already got it nailed!



    Bookmark   June 26, 2013 at 11:59PM
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I also wanted to answer your question about why you didn't get very much feedback. My thoughts:

1. The layout is pretty good as is - people jump in faster when there is a glaring error to correct.

2. Your situation is one few people have experience with.

My personal thoughts are that I would want the prep sink on the island. I would eliminate the window currently above the island (it looks a little goofy to me), center the range, and make the window over the cleanup sink much larger (but I'm a fan of large windows).

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 10:02AM
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Pardon that I just skimmed the responses.... some of my responses might be redundant.

"On vacation, do people really do that much cooking? (I don't, and I really enjoy cooking.) Grilling out, yes, but actual cooking around a range in a kitchen? I'd really be surprised if that were the case."

We do, especially when we are renting with a large group.

Our family of 14 just rented a large beach house (which slept 18ish.) Because of the size of the group, we ate at the house for every meal. It's hard to eat out with a large group; I can't imagine a group of 20+ eating out more than once (picking a restaurant everyone likes, finding one to accommodate that many people, car pooling there, etc.)

During meal time at our rental, every adult wanted to help with dinner and most adults were somewhere in or near the kitchen helping. Your layout is much nicer than what we had to deal with. There was ALWAYS someone at the one sink which uncomfortably butted up to the someone who was always at the cooktop. I think two sinks would be plenty in your kitchen, especially because that island is too small for much else. Instead of adding a sink, I would make the prep sink larger than it is... There could likely be two people side by side prepping together or working on different dishes. I think the window over the prep sink looks strange. Is there a particularly good view over there? If not, I would eliminate the window in that space.

The right-most DW looks like it won't open properly with someone at the cooktop. Is the ice maker crucial (or can ice be produced by the freezers?) If you can eliminate the ice maker, I'd slide the dw/sink/dw set up to the left (toward the dining table.) That would get the DW out of the way of the cooktop.

Your walkways all look pretty small. 38" where a fridge opens up? With countertop overhangs and door handles.... it's tight without the doors open. I like your layout, generally, but the island just seems to be in the way.... Could the island be a table on wheels so people can make more room if they need it? (I think it would need to be smaller than what you have drawn out.) That could give people prep space wherever they want it and then it could still be used for extra (kids table) seating...

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 11:45AM
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I love islands, and think you need the prep space it offers (and can see it being used as a secondary cooking surface with an electric griddle, waffle maker, wok, etc.). Not so sure about seating, it seems small for that. Love the locations of ice maker and fridge; I can see the area that is now seating on the island becoming a beverage station.

I second everything liriodendron wrote (except for the bee wrangling part, I don't do that).

Sadly, I'm insufficiently skilled and experienced, and far too jealous of your location on the beach, to be of much help. But I look forward to seeing things unfold!

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 7:31PM
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But lirio, you didn't answer number 9 ... nobody likes me? ; ) *wink*
We're a family of just two as well. AND we eat out or to go orders almost every meal (except cereal). Talk about a fish out of water planning a kitchen !! But thanks for the kudos. Maybe I did learn a little something in all these years.

By popular request, here is what we have for the plan for the rest of that floor so far. Nothing special, a couple bedrooms, 2 baths, 1/2 bath, and an elevator (a "must have" as it's 25 steps just from ground level up to the first floor!!) . . .

Next floor up has 4 bedrooms, small office, 4 baths, a 1/2 bath, laundry, and a 2nd small living area (basically a sofa facing tv - a great area we will have set up for kids to hang out and play XBox). The office and the 2nd living area have Murphy beds so they can do double duty at night. Top floor is lookout/3rd living area, and 12x18 deck opening to roof (8x18 covered porch with table/chairs and 4x18 open deck). Please note, per local Bldg Code, the footprint of this home cannot be changed or increased even one inch.

LWO, I also thought the island looked kinda spindly and top heavy. That was one of the things that I was feeling a bit concerned with. The wings on the working sides remind me of the Flying Nun. It might be hard to make a beverage bar work at the end of the dining table as we have 5'4" between table edge and stairs on left side at the half bath and as you can see above, that will be a thoroughfare. Plus, this area needs to be clear for times when the tables have to be split, also wide enough for a wheelchair to pass (house is not 100% ADA, but it is wheelchair friendly).

As far as cooking goes, when it is just us the answer is "no!", there are way too many great restaurants to explore there. Other families do to varying degrees, there are even some families that eat pretty much every meal at the house. Yes, there will also be a great grilling/tiki bar/picnic area on the ground floor (code is no grills on decks). I really appreciae hearing from those of you who do rent places at the beach and how they work (or don't work) for your family.

Control, where do you guys vacation ? Most of the time when people say Outer Banks, they are referring to somewhere between Kitty Hawk/Nags Head/Hatteras area. You should give the southern beaches a try ! Our water temp is 10 degrees warmer than Hatteras, wide easy sloping beach with gentle waves and no drop offs, public beach access every 500ft, very family oriented beach (almost all houses, a few 2 story condos, and only one high rise all the way at the end), easy ~20 minutes to North Myrtle tourist mecca if you want a day trip, but lots to do nearby if you want to stay local.

In our other house, we have 14 at dining table, 4 at bar, and 6 at patio table right outside the door next to the dining table. So 24 all right together (plus 2 picnic tables under the house). This house will have enough dining if you count the additional dining on the other levels, but definitely a shortage on this level !

Ideas to gain aisle space between stove & island: shorten depth of island cabinet to 22" instead of 24" (wasted space behind back side of drawers anyway), shorten overhang to 13" instead of 15", overhang on front edge of cabinets 1.5" instead of 2" = 47" aisle counter to counter

Ideas to gain aisle space in 2 aisles from sink to fridges: can elevator shaft be narrowed any?, fold-down or pullout overhangs. One of those slap forehead, duh why didn't I think of that moments. (note to email plllog, anyone else have fold-downs in their kitchen?) = 46" aisle on each end

NKBA suggests 48" aisles for multiple cooks. Can we get away with any less ? Group of moms: I am imagining people lined around the wall - 1 on left of big sink, 1 on right sharing water, 1 at stove, 1 at prep, possibly even 1 to right of prep = 5 workers and nobody has to work butt-to-butt. How much is minimum space we could get away with and still feel comfortable "enough" with a person working at a counter and allowing enough room for another to walk past behind them ? I found on BH&G ... "A 42-inch-wide aisle between opposite countertops is fine, but 48 inches is best where appliances compete, two people work back-to-back, or stools pull out. More than 48 inches is overkill."

Noted 3 votes for moving prep sink to island. Where is best place for prep sink and pros/cons ? My original thinking was right of range to avoid butt-to-butt at range and prep in island, but I am open for changes ! Thoughts ?

Bigger window at cleanup sink = Yes ! How about 44" wide and coming all the way down to the countertop, with granite going into the window sill ? The house is oceanfront, which is why almost the entire living and dining wall is all windows. I agree the window at the prep sink looks a little out of place. I am open to removing that. I had put it in because this is the view out the prep window . . .

Appliances: I am pretty sure that range has 5 burners. I really do think 2 fridges are needed. It can be 90-100 degrees in high summer, which means it takes a lot of space for sodas, milk, juice, water, beer for 20+ people. We usually use one fridge for food stuff and the other whole fridge for beverages. Complete with magnet labels that say "Food" and "Drinks", so you don't have to open both to find what you are looking for. By my measurements, DW open does go into the person at the range's space, but very little, like 1 inch (so range person has 24x29 personal space instead of 24x30). Not sure if the ice maker is crucial ??? What do you guys think ? I wonder if the 2 freezer ice makers can keep up ? Also, would there be enough room if part of the freezer space has to be for store bought ice ?

Small Appliances/Pantry: Pantry is planned to be the space for all of the small appliances on the 14" deep shelves to side, a little locked area for us to use as pantry & liquor when we have to leave for a week for an incoming guest (not carry everything all back home, only to carry it back the next weekend), recycling bin, and for pantry space for guests. I have seen groups of guests in the grocery store walking out with 4 gallons of milk, 6 loaves of bread, and etc, so "enough" pantry is important. It doesn't have to be this layout.

My concerns/questions:
- the look of the island (too small, tall & spindly, top heavy)
- DW's/sink/trash layout - sink, then DW, then trash? or sink, then trash, then DW? but need space on right side of DW to unload into uppers
- ice maker - yes/no ?
- where to locate prep sink
- where to throw trash at prep sink
- window at prep sink ?
- which way to hinge pantry door
- aisles width
- dining shortage

ACK !! I tried to keep this short & concise. Ha. My husband says I talk too much. (and my friends laugh because they all tell me in private they think he talks more than ME!)

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 11:15PM
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We vacation in Ocracoke. We come from the NE, so I don't see us traveling any farther south, although I have an uncle that goes to the Southern beaches with his wife's family, since many of them come from FL and it is a halfway point. My family has been vacationing in Ocracoke (fishermen - so cooler water temps suit us) since the early 1960's before there were any paved roads.

I know you don't want to hear this, but I think you need to go back to the drawing board. The lack of dining space the the relative smallness of the kitchen which leads to such tight aisles are not going to be overcome by changing the layout. A house for 28 ppl. just needs to be bigger - especially with handicap access an issue. Is this large occupancy being forced upon you by realtor/property management because this is ocean front?

It just seems all the problems stem from trying to fit enough for 28 into a space that really can't hold that many. I agree from experience that you need 2 fridges, a walk in pantry, and ice maker (somewhere, maybe not in kitchen?) and the 2 DW for that many people. Just seems the footprint won't allow for it.

Like I said, I've stayed in homes that fit up to 12 and the kitchens are similar in size (but only one fridge, no ice maker and smaller dining table). The rest of the house doesn't seem to have what I usually see advertised in 28 person homes either. No pool table/game room? (a small den/game room with 2nd tv and gaming system is, again, what we'd have in a 10-12 person house) No second kitchen/bar? Or are some of these things on the 3rd floor? And you said you had an outdoor dining area on the ground floor (I assume by a pool) so is there an ice maker there? How protected/covered is that area? Is there a small bar fridge?

As for the design as it stands: Remove the wings from island. I like the window - weird little windows like these are typical in beach rental homes, to maximize the view. I think the prep sink location is fine, but no way will you have a 5th worker to it's right. Ice maker moved to a designated bar area. We get very few things that need to be kept frozen when we visit, so freezers in fridges should be adequate. Can you do a pocket door for pantry? Removing island wings will fix issue with aisle width, but exacerbate the seating issue. The only thing I can think of as a fix would be a screened porch with seating on this level, but sounds like you can't do that...

I'm tempted to say only do the handicap bedroom and bath on this floor and don't do an office on the above floor, but a 5th bedroom instead. Is that possible? Then put a pull-out couch in the top floor family room?

Do you have any links to rental homes of similar style to the one you are building? It could help people visualize what you are trying to do.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 10:23AM
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Sophie Wheeler

The size of the house and it's layout don't work for that many people. Think smaller occupancy goals here. With the goal being 10-15 people, you can downsize to one single fridge in the cooking zone and a couple of under counter fridges in a beverage bar zone. I agree that just extending the sink wall cabinets to meet the exterior door would be the best option for that. That would also let you downsize the pantry a bit, and give you more room for the kitchen traffic space, which would be needed even with a 15 person crowd. It would also let the upstairs beds and bath downsize to 3 good sized ones, with maybe more space for the kids den.

Now, if your goal is to get that many people into this space, the central staircase is going to have to move to allow you more room for dining and the kitchen. That will likely mean the elimination of one of the bedrooms on this floor, and the elimination of the kids den in favor of making it an actual bedroom to make up for the loss of the 2nd bedroom on this floor.

With that in mind, how about locating the stairs and elevator all the way to the front of the house, maybe with strategic windows into the stairwell to keep it from being dark or wonky looking from the exterior. That would keep the utility spaces toward the area with the worst view and allow the rest of the space to be more open, leading to a more usable layout for your goal of a large rental.

Now, creating so much open space in a multi storied dwelling is likely to mean more engineering will be required. And more steel. But if that's your goal, you've got to manage to make something like that happen in order to have the capacity that you want. It's just too cramped in the public spaces with the current layout to work for that many people.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 11:03AM
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The more I think about this project, the more I think you need to downsize your occupancy. I did a search of 6 bedroom homes in the OBX, and none of them had a capacity of 28. There were houses with that capacity with at least 10 bedrooms. Houses with 6 bedrooms typically maxed out at 16. I agree with Holly that a lower capacity would allow you to not worry about the seating as much and could cut back to a single fridge plus beverage fridge.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 12:46PM
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Control, Ocracoke is awesome ! I know you love it there. And I understand it is even more special for you because it is a family tradition. My husband goes there once a year for a "guys trip" fishing, but I have only been once before that I can remember. The long ferry ride has always made it so much easier for us to choose a beach that takes less time to get to. By the time we include the ferry time, we could already be at OIB unpacked and having a beverage on the deck.

I don't want you guys to get too bogged down on how many people the house sleeps. I just want the best kitchen that it can be given the constraints we have to live with (same with many kitchens around GW, right?!). The "up to" 28 number is if they used both pullout sofas, both Murphy beds, both trundles, and both toddler mattresses. Renters, of course, have the option to stay in our home even if there are less people in their group. I imagine typically it will be groups of 16-20.

If it helps, think of this as a house that sleeps 5. Those 5 adults are active in the kitchen and love to cook, and they have a dinner party every night for 15 of their closest friends, for one week.

We do have experience in this, and the kitchen even as it is designed "so far" is better than most of the other houses. As lolauren said, this layout is much nicer than what they had in the house they just rented that slept 18. Most of the comparable homes sleep similar numbers - out of the 33 comparable homes at our rental company, only 3 sleep 12, there are 5 that sleep 16, there are 6 that sleep 17-19, and there are 18 that sleep 20-26 ... and One house is 6BR+office+playroom sleeps 30 and was built only 2 years ago, they built at the same time we built.

Kitchen at house that sleeps 30, has bar/dining seating for 21 ...

Yes, 2nd living area will have tv and gaming system. Yes, foosball table in 3rd floor living. No pool, it is not allowed by code. But yes, Hot Tub.

Do we have a link to rental home of similar style to what we are building ? A good example is our other house ... it is 6BR 5.5Bath +office +sunroom and it sleeps 22-29.

That being said . . . if you had a blank slate, how would you design this kitchen ? Exterior walls, stairs, elevator cannot change, but everything else can change on this floor. Must include 2 fridges, 2 DW, range, sink +prep sink, pantry, ice would be nice.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 7:48PM
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Sophie Wheeler

OK, focusing on storage and separating zones and functions better for more people to participate, here's my suggestions. Do a beverage bar in the living room space. Two beverage fridges can hold a LOT of cold stuff, and there's the ice maker and extra sink to wash out the glasses. You might squeeze in an 18" DW, but it's hard for me to say without actual dimensions of that wall. Move the pantry to that awkward spot where the stair case wraps around. If you need overflow, the closet in the hall next to the non handicap bedroom can hold some bulk storage like paper towels, etc. Use a 42" french door fridge in the kitchen, as that will maximize shelf space and give you a lot more room than you think. It's all about shelf space, not cubic feet, and french door fridges are big winners in that department because you get the whole width of the fridge compartment as cold storage.

I did a window seat/banquette under the DR windows. The table can snug up to that crosswise for small intimate dinners and it can be turned and 4 leaves can be added for a larger gathering. The nice thing about a banquette is that it gives your more room for a longer table in the space than you would if you centered it in the room.

The island changes orientation, giving you more aisle room, and becomes mobile. Now it can scoot wherever it needs to in the space for whatever crowd. It also has flip up extensions on two sides to increase the prep space for a large crowd. I'd recommend butcher block, as that works well for flip ups.

The range gets centered, which gives two nice sized prep spaces to either side of it on the perimeter, both with access to water. It's also an aesthetic decision, as it just looks better, and with a pretty chimney style hood, will make a very appealing upscale looking photo for advertising purposes. The MW goes next to the fridge in an upper cabinet, and I might even add another one in the beverage area upper and another small one as a countertop appliance. The prep sink went to the corner to give two prep zones to the left and right of it. I'd recommend a trash can under the sink(s), and creating a space for a stainless step on flip up type on the mobile island. A hidden trash isn't a good idea in a rental! You now have room for at least 6-10 people actually working in the kitchen without getting into each other's way too much.

You will need to be very conscious of the electrical loads for all of this, and I'd recommend having 3 small appliance circuits instead of the standard 2. What I do in a regular kitchen is to have the two different circuits alternate outlets around the kitchen so you don't overload any one circuit. With 3, and taking into account MW placement, I'd make sure that each MW was on a separate circuit, and also that you alternated outlets around the space to keep from tripping breakers if the waffle maker, coffee maker, and MW were all going at once.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 8:36PM
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Sophie Wheeler

Oh yes, I'd consider installing a header on the back wall to be able to do backsplash windows all on that wall. It's another chance for daylight and a glimpse of a view. You could also do a window behind the range if it were safety glass and had a non combustible frame. Do a glass hood over it. Now THAT would be the million dollar brochure shot!

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 8:51PM
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