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Close to nature - refined contemporary kitchen by Rasmussen Architects

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Refined contemporary kitchen by Rasmussen Architects

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The natural environment can be a strong design influence, as this project shows.

Architect Soren Rasmussen says the material palette of the house directly reflects its secluded, wooded, waterfront location.

"The house is a refined expression of the materials that feature outdoors," he says. "The glazing complements the translucency of the water, while the wood, stone and raw concrete reference the trees and natural stone."

This contrast can be seen to good effect in the kitchen, where flush cabinets in European white oak are paired with a large, rustic slab of maple wood. The maple forms a wide bar top for a casual dining area at one end of a long island. It also provides a strong textural element that is a visual link with the natural surroundings.

A Pennsylvania bluestone tiled floor, which extends out to the terrace, reinforces the connection between inside and out. Similar bluestone features on a wall at one side of the kitchen, which forms the spine of the house.


To minimise the intrusive nature of large appliances, the refrigerator is integrated into the wood cabinetry. Clutter is also minimised by having a second working kitchen directly behind the perimeter cabinets. This provides ample storage for long-term supplies.

"Although the location is isolated, the owners do entertain often, with guests staying over," says the architect.

In addition to a Viking double oven, there is a single under-bench oven on the same wall in the main kitchen. The microwave oven is in the rear kitchen.

There is also plenty of space for several people to work in the kitchen at once, thanks to the long white Okite quartz benchtops on both the island and perimeter cabinets. The backsplash is also in quartz, which reflects light back into the kitchen, enhancing the contrast between textural and smooth elements.

First published date: 12 April 2012

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Credit List

Architect Soren Rasmussen Architects (Vancouver, BC)
Interior designer David Drummond, Clarke Interior Design
Structural engineer Bogdonov Pao Associates
Builder Calrudd Construction
Cabinet company Seagull Enterprises
Kitchen cabinets Wood veneer
Benchtops Okite quartz
Sink Blanco
Taps Dornbracht
Oven and ventilation Viking
Range Wolf
Flooring Hakwood Engineered Floors from BC Hardwood Floor Co
Paints and varnishes Benjamin Moore; Sikkens
Lighting suppliers MP Lighting; SLS Lighting; Lightform