award winning modern kitchen design

Top kitchen tips from our favourite celebrities


The hub of any home, the kitchen should be a place you can enjoy with friends and family and a space that truly resembles your personality and style



Guy sebastian kitchen style

 Guy & Jules Sebastian

“Being on the coast, we made the house all about the view. When you walk in you see the blue water immediately. When you’re not facing the view, you’ve got this intense black gloss reflecting the view back at you.
“The kitchen design was tough and I was lucky to work with a talented designer at Freedom Kitchens. I told her exactly what I wanted and all of the problems that I’d encountered with the existing layout … I love cooking and I love the kitchen. It’s amazing to cook in. We have this really cool spice drawer. You pull it out and you see everything in it. Hettich designed it. The corner drawers are really cool too — it’s like a swivel thing — the shelves all flip out.
“For the benchtop we chose really nice Caesarstone and had the bench cut into an L-shape. The main part where the stove is located is an off-white and there’s an almost-concrete colour as well. I chose all the colours. At the time Jules was busy in babyland.”

Photography by Sue Stubbs

oak panelled modern kitchen

Mark Best, chef & owner, Marque Restaurant, and AEG ambassador

“The kitchen is modular in design and most people say quite minimalist. For me minimalism is bringing order to chaos so everything is hidden behind oak-panelled doors and under the Fontainebleau benchtop. Being a professional chef, I designed it with everything at hand within one step. My favourite appliance is the AEG induction hotplate. While I was new to this technology domestically, I would not use anything else now.”

Modern Kitchen, Timber Floor, Stone Island Bench

Con Moshopoulos of Urban Kitchens

“Beyond a grand old Victorian facade is this luxurious modern home that the owners were renovating to sell. It was therefore important that the grandeur throughout the rest of the house was reflected in the new kitchen. We kept the look of the cabinets very minimalist in white gloss, with no handles and integrated appliances so that the Calacatta marble would be the standout. We extended the marble splashback above the cabinets and used a nice thick 80mm finish on both the island and benchtops for a real sense of luxury. We also used a reconstituted timber veneer, which is more durable than standard veneer. It provides a nice contrast to the marble and adds warmth and another natural element to the space. It also ties in beautifully with the timber dining table.”
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Kitchen, Modern, Marble

Con Moshopoulos of Urban Kitchens

“This kitchen is modern, minimalist and functional. Created around the owner’s desire for a focal point in the room, the design utilises high-gloss two-pack timber veneer doors to create a feature wall. The kitchen’s striking appearance continues with the split-level, waterfall-edge island bar and working bench in Calacatta marble. The inbuilt rangehood and handle-less drawers maintain the sleek, modern design. Stainless-steel appliances work perfectly with the stainless-steel laminate kickboards that complement the design seamlessly. Organic shape is incorporated into the sleek design through the use of a pull-out stainless-steel spray tap centred in the island bar. This not only breaks up the geometric lines of the kitchen, but also acts as an added centrepiece.”
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Photography by Tim Turner

rural tuscan lifestyle kitchen


Kitchens by Peter Gill

“The clients’ love for the rural Tuscan lifestyle was evident in their home, which boasted heavy recycled beams together with rendered surfaces, so the design brief was obvious. However, the challenge was incorporating a workable kitchen with modern technology. This meant a few meetings to discuss options, the end result being a new wall fitted and a doorway blocked. We then had the space to create our clients’ dream kitchen to allow for their love of cooking in a warm, comfortable atmosphere. We made a timber door in a Shaker profile, which was then distressed and finished in two different paint finishes. Recycled ironbark benchtops add to the feel. The client also liked a pastry board, so we incorporated a piece of Carrara marble. A faux chimney was built and rendered on site. This incorporates an under-cabinet rangehood. Below the chimney, we fitted a copper splashback, which adds warmth and emits a beautiful patina under the rangehood lights. To minimise the contemporary look created by the use of modern appliances, the fridge and dishwasher were integrated.”
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Ita Buttrose in the kitchen

Ita Buttrose

“I like to have space when I cook. I love the addition of the integrated chopping board we designed and I like a kitchen that has plenty of light; kitchens should be bright because they’re a focal point of your home. I also believe your kitchen has to be friendly and warm.
“I was in Canberra visiting the Alzheimer’s Australia national office and while I was there, I visited the Granite Transformations Canberra showroom — I had a wonderful time. It’s one of those experiences where you think, ‘Oh, I love that, oh, I like that, oh, look at that cabinet, oh my, look at that, and that….’ You’d take the whole lot if you could.
“I thought I should be practical and think about my colour scheme and the lifestyle that I lead here in the Southern Highlands of NSW, which is very relaxed. This is a place where my family visits, that’s why there are cots, bikes and toys. It’s a laid-back, comfortable way of living and the kitchen needed to reflect that.”
Photography by Sue Stubbs

Modern red terra kitchen design

Susan Wasley for The Kitchen Designer

“The owners love to cook so they wanted the kitchen to really be the centrepiece of their new modern home — and they weren’t afraid to go bold. The Dulux Red Terra of the splashback is continued as a colour accent throughout the house and provides a vibrant contrast to the two-tone cabinets. The warm tones of the granite pick up both the accent colour and the Dark Chocolate of the cabinets. As an independent kitchen designer I’m always researching overseas design trends, which is where I took inspiration from for the abstract shape and overlapping benchtops of the island. The corner angle mimics angles found elsewhere in the home’s architecture, while the different thickness and heights of the benchtop and mix of colours help distinguish between the food preparation and seating area. There’s a sliding door to a butler’s pantry, with the dishwasher and another sink, to help keep the main area clean and clutter-free while the owners entertain.”
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contemporary 1920's style kitchen

Susan Hasler for Sydney Kitchens

“A contemporary take on a classic 1920s New York-inspired design was the brief from the homeowner, combining the scale and grandeur of the era with modern convenience and storage. The marble benchtop and splashback was a must, chosen for its elegance and unique quality, as no two pieces are the same. Similarly, the cabinets were hand-painted to add a custom touch and contrast beautifully with the dark walls and floor. The Shaker-style cabinets complement the existing windows, which provide an outlook for the long and narrow space. Attention to detail is evident in the choice of marine cup and cattle horn handles, along with the lantern lighting and hanging utensil holder, which complete the authentic bespoke look.”
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sleek and sophisticated design

Rob & Wanda Bresa for Accento

“The brief was for a sleek and sophisticated kitchen to flow seamlessly with the existing home design. The Grey Oak-veneer cabinetry complements the natural stone flooring perfectly and matches the joinery in the study. The streamlined appearance of this kitchen is achieved with integrated appliances and the stainless-steel sink concealed by glass panels. The clever use of reflective surfaces creates strong visual impact with the mirror splashback and shiny stainless-steel appliances, reflecting natural light and stunning ocean views. This space meets the daily cooking requirements of the family and has plenty of large drawers to store cooking equipment and their many spices and jars. Another standout feature of the kitchen is the 3.4m island with an Arabascato marble benchtop. Marble is also a prominent design feature in the bathroom. The large Pietra Grey marble floor tiles contrast beautifully against the high-gloss white lacquer doors. The owners wanted a unified space, with the freestanding bath the only separation between bedroom and bathroom. Subtle touches such as heated towel rails, dimmed lighting and organisational drawer dividers enhance the luxury of the room.”
For more information call 08 9385 4575

Darren James kitchen tips

Darren James

“My clients are culinary pros so this kitchen is all about their cooking style. With a semi-commercial feel, the kitchen boasts separate dry areas for cooking items and another for wet preparation, like cleaning fish. Because they love to cook together, we designed dual prep areas mirroring each other — both housing a custom-made butcher’s block and a full utility station for knives, spices and oils. The view over the beautiful Samford Valley inspired the colour palette and finishes — a walnut-stained timber stack panel, earthy-coloured marble, stainless-steel, Avocado Green tiles and Corian, aptly called Earth. It’s a kitchen I relate to in every way. It’s warm, inviting, relaxed yet still sophisticated — everything I stand for as a designer.”
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minimalist modern kitchen design

Cristina Puglia

“This kitchen exhibits three qualities that are crucial for me in kitchen design: functionality, beauty and family. Above all, it’s a space that allows everyone to participate. The Gaggenau appliances are sheer poetry, not only because of their functionality but also for their attention to detail. They are placed at ergonomic heights to maximise comfort and enjoyment. The slab seating area is inviting and can be used by the kids, when friends are over, or as a fabulous prep and serving area. The selection of materials is practical and beautiful, forming a backdrop for colourful accessories. For me this kitchen embraces the simplicity of design.”
For more information contact
Photography by Dieter Eubel

granite ushape design kitchen

Sian Gillanders

“The clients initially wanted the kitchen remodelled, using the existing granite benchtops in a typical ‘U’-shape design. They love to entertain and required a modern timeless look with minimal detail, and adequate storage allowing the inclusion of many new ‘wishlist’ appliances. It was agreed an alternate floorplan would improve the work flow, functionality and aesthetic of the kitchen so an existing wing wall at the end of the granite island was removed. The new island was incorporated lengthways, which provides better work flow and storage as well as allowing for dining by way of a separate custom-made, American oak table complemented by materials used within other areas of the new design. The David Trubridge timber feature light overhead adds warmth as well as the necessary ‘drama’.”
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contemporary modern design

Debra DeLorenzo

“The clients wanted more bench space, better connectivity to the rest of the house and better storage; there needed to be a space for everything, especially small appliances. They wanted a design that was clean and simple but did not look sterile. My design required half the existing kitchen wall to be removed. By positioning the sink in the peninsular, the main work area is now more connected to the family and dining rooms. Repositioning the hob also created more space, with drawers beneath for extra storage. The existing skylights have become a feature after I placed a wall oven and new pull-out pantry at three-quarter height on the back wall. Adding a desk area at the edge of the kitchen also makes it a more family-friendly and functional space. This is connected to the kitchen via a large sliding-door storage cupboard for children’s toys at the bottom, and crockery and glasses above. The end result is lots of bench space, lots of storage and an easy-to-maintain and aesthetically-pleasing space.”
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award winning modern kitchen design

Lee Hardcastle of Enigma Interiors

Australian Kitchen Designer of the Year, sponsored by Smeg
“The stunning architecture of this waterfront property needed a comparably structured kitchen. The elongated and spacious form was achieved through selecting the appropriate material, creating plenty of bench space, and using a uniform pale colour. The hand-picked Staron Quasar White benchtop flows to a 150mm diameter cove as one continuous surface without a visible join. It amalgamates into an angled splashback, featuring an etched wave pattern, which envelops itself around the integrated V-ZUG wall-mounted appliances. The height differences and abstract shape of the extended island adds interest, while the Grigio Carnico marble surrounding the fireplace provides a natural element and focal point. This uncluttered and streamlined design is achieved by two clever techniques: the kitchen sits against the back wall with the appliances at usable heights; and the entire splashback is on an angle to completely hide the rangehood canopy. Contrasting elements, such as glossy black borders, mirrored appliances and wallpaper around the end cabinet add textural variances to the clean and glossy white surfaces. A glamorous and studiously envisioned masterpiece.”
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Edited by Karsha Green

from Home Design vo1.17 no.1