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Traditional surfaces such as granite are finding their place alongside the latest cabinetry finishes

Material choice


If it's been ten or twenty years since you last purchased a kitchen, you may be in for a pleasant surprise.

Granite, for example, is now more affordable for New Zealand homeowners, as companies such as Apollo Bathroom & Kitchen import the natural stone directly, then pass on the savings to the customer.

Many of Apollo's clients specify granite after discovering the price, says kitchen designer James Ke. The Apollo kitchen shown above features Emerald Pearl granite benchtops. The sheeny, shell-like flecks in the granite are offset by the brushed aluminium appliances and the acrylic veneer cabinetry. The cabinetry is coated with a metallic paint, then covered with a layer of clear acrylic.

"Many people like metallic painted cabinets – this is a new way of achieving the look with a more durable finish."

Many of the cabinets have pull-out wire baskets, which increase the available storage space. A rangehood and large range are positioned centrally, providing a focal point and introducing an element of symmetry. The result, says Ke, is an interesting mixture of contemporary and traditional.


The owner of the kitchen shown above right heard about the company through word of mouth. An architect, he wanted a light, contemporary style to suit his new home, and was interested in achieving a boxy, sleek look. This has been done through an unusual level of detailing, such as 30mm borders around the cabinetry in the main kitchen and scullery.

"The borders provide a neater, smoother and more consistent look," says Ke. "The integrated Smeg rangehood and slim aluminium drawer handles continue the sophisticated, understated feel."

Apollo imports granite benchtops, cabinet doors and accessories into New Zealand, enabling it to offer high-end custom kitchens at competitive prices.

For details, contact Apollo Bathroom & Kitchen, Unit B, 5 Apollo Drive, Mairangi Bay, Auckland, phone (09) 478 8966, fax (09) 476 3300. Email: .

First published date: 07 March 2008

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