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It's a man's world

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Gleaming metal surfaces, slabs of stone, and electric doors that open with a touch – this kitchen is designed for a masculine sensibility


It is sometimes said that you can tell a lot about a kitchen's owner from the kitchen itself. With a pared-back aesthetic this may be more tricky, but proportion and choice of materials will likely still give the game away.

This kitchen, by designer Mal Corboy, was designed for a residence within a chic apartment complex. The owner, a man, wanted a different look to those found in adjacent units and asked Corboy to create a European-style kitchen that would give the apartment a point of difference.

"The original kitchen was U-shaped and offered limited space," says Corboy. "However, we pushed walls out here and moved floor surfaces there, and created a fresh, modern kitchen that hugs the wall of the now expansive open-plan living and kitchen area."

It is clear at a glance that this is a man's domain. Corboy introduced solid marble surfaces on the island and splashback, and provided floor-to-ceiling stainless steel cabinetry, matched with a chunky 150mm benchtop on the island opposite.

"The cabinet doors are electronic and open with a touch," says Corboy. "The fridge and freezer – Gaggenau, like all the appliances – are integrated. However, we ran the stainless steel up to the ceiling for a simple, dramatic look, using the space above the fridge for storage."


Catering to a variety of cooking options, a steamer is built into the island, with a 900mm-wide oven placed under the bench opposite. A 900mm warming drawer that fits snugly beneath the oven was designed by Corboy, in keeping with the minimalist look. A teppanyaki grill sits between the two cooktops above.

"The entire design is set off by the underlit toekicks on the island and perimeter cabinetry," says Corboy. "These are quite short to accommodate an integrated wine fridge and dishwasher under the deep island benchtop. Concealed blue lighting gives the simple, solid space a floating, futuristic appearance."

First published date: 28 August 2009

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Credit List

Kitchen designer Mal Corboy NKBA, KBDI, Mal Corboy Design (Auckland)
Kitchen manufacturer Fyfe Kitchens
Cabinetry Brushed stainless steel
Countertops Stat vein marble from Architectural Stone; stainless steel from SJ Crosbie Stainless Steel
Splashback Stat vein marble from Architectural Stone
Kitchen sink Custom by Mal Corboy Design, manufactured by SJ Crosbie Stainless Steel
Oven, cooktops, teppanyaki plate, rangehood and steamer Gaggenau from Kouzina Appliances