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A perfect fit – small apartment kitchen remodeled

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Small kitchen remodel by Alan Berman of Archetype

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It's rare to come across a kitchen that hasn't been updated for around 50 years, but that was exactly the situation for the kitchen in this co-op apartment on New York's Madison Avenue.

Architect Alan Berman of Archetype Design Studio, who worked on the project with his team and direction from the client, says the kitchen was completely original – right down to its green and white metal cabinets.

"It also featured fake archways and murals that made it look like a cheap Greek restaurant, and it was closed off from the rest of the apartment," Berman says. "The owner asked for a kitchen with a much more open feel, but she didn't want a loft-style design. She preferred a contemporary classic look, that would be not too modern nor too old fashioned."

The kitchen was subsequently gutted and rebuilt with maple wood cabinetry featuring an Ebony Venice stain. Decorative mouldings on the panel doors give the cabinets a classical look, but this is balanced by the contemporary aesthetic of the Black Galaxy granite countertops.

Project manager Ingrid Rancier says to provide more storage, the height of the overhead cabinets was raised.


"We also added a row of cabinets above a new pass-through to the dining room. Squares of backlit glass at the top of the cabinets prevent the units from overpowering the space."

A radiator was concealed within one of the cabinets, with just the vents showing at the top.

Keeping with the simple material palette, the designer specified a single mosaic tile in soft brown tones for all the walls. Darker floor tiles help to ground the space, visually.

Connectivity is also greatly improved. The pass-through to the dining room incorporates bifolding doors with opaque glass.

First published date: 06 October 2013

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Credit List

Architect Alan Berman, Archetype Design Studio (New York)
Project manager Ingrid Rancier, Archetype Design Studio
Cabinets Cabico raised panel door in maple wood with Ebony Venice stain
Backsplash and walls Porcelanosa Bhutan Bronzy Brown mosaic tiles
Hardware Oil-rubbed bronze from Du Verre Hardware
Countertops Black Galaxy granite from New York Marble & Ceramic
Sink Elkay
Faucet Kallista brushed nickel
Instant hot water and filtration system InSinkErator Classic
Range and microwave Viking
Dishwasher Miele Optima integrated
Refrigerator Sub-Zero
Under-cabinet lights Jesco Lighting LED Tape Light