The best kitchens of 2021



Thomas loof

The all-white kitchen might be a classic, but it was an endangered species in the design world in 2021. In its place: details of color, glamor and dazzle ranging from layers of emerald lacquer with hand-poured terrazzo floors and custom chandeliers. If we were to psychoanalyze the trend, we would assume that months (turned years) of time spent at home – and home kitchens where cold stoves were suddenly turned on to produce everything from sourdough breads to gourmet meals made. house – could have inspired many to increase the focus on designing the most used space in the house. Here are some of our favorite picks.

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Green lacquer

Green lacquer envelops a minimalist kitchen in a Parisian loft designed by Fabrizio Casiraghi. The open plan kitchen has zinc worktops, the oven is by Miele and the kitchen floor is travertine inlaid with Verde Alpi marble.


Marble wonder

A bright blue La Cornue range was the starting point for Summer Thornton’s Chicago kitchen design. Limed oak cabinetry, an intensely patterned marble countertop, and Roman and Williams Guild pendants add to the glamor of the room.


Crisp details

Textured accents like fluted wood cabinetry by Henrybuilt and Cristallo quartzite countertops by ABC Stone warm a modern and stylish kitchen by Michael K. Chen. The bar stools are from KGBL and the pendant is from Roll & Hill.


All that brass

Architect Poonam Khanna’s design for a Hamptons kitchen features a custom brass-clad island designed to wear a patina over time. It is topped by a Calacatta marble countertop. The pendants are from Apparatus.


Romantic lilac

Lavender walls add an unexpected charm to the kitchen in textile designer Lisa Corti’s Milan apartment, which is separated from the living room by a glass wall. Colorful touches like a blue worktable and red plinths add to the candy-hued palette.


Inner strength

In Johannesburg, architects Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens created an open kitchen with a flamed Namibian granite island and spectacular Faber cylinder hoods. The Aga stove is original from the 1950s house designed by Eyvind Finsen.


Metal pedal

A solid wood table by Hermès Erbanesteria offers an organic counterpoint to the stainless steel kitchen of designer Juliana Lima Vasconcellos’ house in Rio de Janeiro. The chairs are by Andrée Putman for Emeco.


Adjustment to be tiled

A restaurateur’s kitchen in a mid-century villa in Capri, designed by architect Giuliano Andrea dell’Uva, has walls clad in majolica tiles, custom metal-fronted cabinets by DeManincor, commercial appliances and a terrazzo floor.


Celadon Symphony

An antique farmhouse table provides additional workspace and anchors the kitchen in Chris Benz’s 1880s home on Long Island. He kept the house’s existing cabinetry and refreshed it with Farrow & Ball’s Old White, with doors and trim in Ball Green. The brass hardware is from Rejuvenation.


Glamor of yesteryear

This kitchen, inside an 18th century villa designed by Lorenzo Castillo, retains its old world charm but with lavish touches, sometimes literally: the fringed bronze chandelier comes from a royal residence in Madrid.


Staking of a (re) claim

London-based design firm Retrouvius transforms salvaged architectural elements into “glamorous salvage”. In this townhouse kitchen, the island was made from old museum cabinets and the pendants are made from vintage Czech glass chemistry funnels.


ice cream baby

From its brass cabinetry to its hand-molded glass chandelier and chunky terrazzo floor, this Milanese kitchen by architect Hannes Peer nods to 1970s glamor. Vintage bar stools are from Marcel Breuer.


Colorful cubism

For a 1930s bungalow in Los Angeles’ Silverlake neighborhood, Rachel Bullock of LAUN created a kitchen in a box: a green lacquered cube conceals appliances, cabinets, and shelves for dishes and pantry items. Next to it, the island is in pink marble.


Rich and rustic

For restaurateur Rose Bonura, Ryan Lawson outfitted an 18th-century home in Stamford, Conn. With a rough-wood paneled island and open shelving by Mathieu Matégot for Gubi. The recessed lights are from Schoolhouse Electric, and the range is from Wolf and the refrigerator from SubZero.


Call curve

Feng shui principles guided the design of a TriBeCa kitchen by architectural firm Dash Marshall. A curved cabinet wall and matching island embody the concept of “flow” and are clad in revolving panels. The counters are Caesarstone and the pendants are from Ladies & Gentleman Studio.


Shrine filled with light

The focal point of this Brooklyn kitchen by Home Studios is an island clad in fluted white marble with a top and matching backsplash in deeply veined Paonazzo. Custom oak joinery conceals appliances and storage. The range is signed Lacanche.


Postmodern twist

In a Brooklyn townhouse designed by Civilian, the kitchen has been moved to the living room level. Inspired by commercial kitchens, the steel frame island gets a luxurious upgrade with an Arrabescatto marble top. A custom red laminate hood adds a pop of color to the neutral space.

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