As empty nesters become retirees, conventional wisdom says that downsizing your home is the next logical step. But the caveat here is that lifestyle considerations remain top of mind to take you into your next chapter. For this retired couple with adult children, lifestyle was a top priority when they relocated to a moderately sized custom built house on the golf course at Bear Mountain. “We love Vancouver Island and chose Bear Mountain because my husband loves to golf and these two world-class courses are his favourite.” Bringing their finely tuned wish list to their new build, the design-savvy couple turned to Harbour City Kitchens for their master craft millwork. Interior Designer from HCK, Megan McKeage, worked closely with the homeowner to bring this traditionally styled kitchen its perfect blend of functionality and personal prerequisites.
After a grand total of five custom home builds and seven renovations to date, these homeowners were confident in their design choices. The couple wanted to curate a sophisticated aesthetic with quality materials that offered a warm and welcoming feel. “We were limited in both space and style of the house compared to what we were used to but it was important for us to create an open plan and a look that was striking and different.” Diverging from the trending all-white kitchen, the couple created a traditional kitchen defined by bold details and a healthy dose of black for a more dramatic and luxurious aesthetic.
After designing over ten kitchens, the owner has a highly discerning priority list with functionality holding at number one. “I now have several custom drawers in place: under the sink, beside the stove and especially in the baking area of the island. About 45 years ago, I designed transparent drawers in the island to house my baking ingredients, like flour and sugar, and I have been transporting the original containers with me to each new house we build.” Black cabinets, including the glass front hutch, line the kitchen while white cabinets flank the island in what the owner refers to as her ‘ebony and ivory’ design. Cream and black quartz countertops pair with narrow subway tiles in black/brushed stainless/grey backsplash for a punchy graphic effect.
Traditional kitchens often employ multiple finishes so it’s no surprise to see shaker-style cabinets paired with glass and metal mesh inserts on the uppers, cream and black quartz countertops and a custom hearth-like hood surround to add to the comfortably layered look. Built to last, Harbour City Cabinetry uses a durable wood doweling system on their cabinets instead of the common industry practice of a screw and staple method. To ensure the cabinets are square and strong, they are then set with pressurized case clamps.
A luxurious nod to tradition, this butler’s pantry boasts built-in lighting in the custom cabinetry, coffee station, wet bar, freezer, microwave and, auxiliary storage. “I always include a butler’s pantry to hold extra food, the good dishes and in this case, we included a stand-up freezer as well.” The variety of displayed dishes and ceramics gives the pantry a collected-over-time feel.