Kitchen Remodeling San Diego

San Diego Kitchen Remodeling

Kitchen recipes
Remove walls, then mix in storage,
new appliances and a splash of color
By Mary James
San Diego Kitchen

What a difference a wall makes – especially when it disappears.

Two of the remodeled kitchens on next Saturday’s tour sponsored by the San Diego chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) were transformed when a wall was demolished. In both cases, the kitchens were opened to adjacent living spaces to create stylish – and functional – areas for entertaining.

With the exception of the eliminated walls, the two kitchens couldn’t be more
different: One is sleekly contemporary and bursting with pricey appliances and
accents; the other is a color-splashed traditional where the budget-minded
homeowners worked with their designer to keep costs down.

The annual tour will showcase a total of eight kitchens located around the county
from Escondido south to Coronado and El Cajon.

Here are tales of the two reconfigured kitchens.

Make mine modern

Modern San Diego Kitchen

When a Minnesota couple decided to redo their Del Mar getaway home before
making it their permanent residence, they knew the floor plan of the two-story
home needed a dramatic change.

Squared columns and a clunky curved wall on the first floor cut off the dining
and family room from the living room
and dark U-shaped kitchen
with its dated white-washed cabinets and black-tile counters.

The couple, Neal and Heike Maglaque, wanted a “more open, clean California look,” in contrast to the “cozy feel” of their traditional Midwest home,
says Sol Quintana Wagoner, senior designer at Jackson Design and Remodeling and an ASID Allied member.

They settled on a soft contemporary style when Wagoner showed them the DeWils Horizons line of cabinets with a distinctive horizontally striped en-
gineered wood veneer. “He was sold on them and wanted to go modern,” Wagoner said. “They had lived in Europe and they travel a lot. They wanted what
was new and trendy, but not harsh or hard-edged contempo-

Wagoner, who earned a degree in architecture in her native Argentina before moving to California five years ago, was also asked to add storage in the
kitchen and improve its functionality for the couple, who often entertained family and friends.

She began by removing the columns and nonload-bearing wall and then relocated the kitchen to the former living room, which was enlarged by pushing out one of its exterior walls to align with the dining room.

The structural changes transformed the ground floor into a fluid light filled open
space and made room for an expanded kitchen, including a new island/bar; a home office (formerly the kitchen); and a modernized family room with an inviting corner fireplace.

A stainless steel Vent-A- Hood above a Wolfe range became a focal point of the new kitchen’s “cooking work triangle” that includes a new Sub-Ze-
ro stainless steel refrigerator, island sink and microwave. To the left is a clean-up area with a dishwasher and custom stainless-steel apron sink that stretches below a trio of windows with backyard views. To the right is a tall bank of stor-
age cabinets that hover slightly below a soffit.

Top cabinets that flank the range hood have frosted glass doors framed by matte

Modern Cabinets San Diego

aluminum that flip up to open via an Aventos Blumotion lift system. The slightest green tinge in the glass echoes the sage green of the sea foam granite counter-tops.

“The colors add softness and warmth,” said Wagoner, who picked a pale gray color for the kitchen and dining room walls. “The wood on the cabinets and the limestone on the floor and backsplash bring in natural materials that also add warmth.”

To balance the high ceiling in the room, Wagoner relied on the horizontal lines of the cabinet veneer and stainless steel pulls. A mosaic of glass, stoned hand-glazed tiles runs like stiff ribbons through the backsplash.

Their different widths add in- terest and contrast, Wagoner says. “It breaks things up,” she adds.

The new kitchen island includes a wine refrigerator at a far edge “so it wouldn’t interfere with the cook when guests come into the kitchen when the
homeowners are entertaining,” Wagoner says. A “bridge” of gleaming Absolut black granite forms a bar at one end of the island where four Italian stools
with leather cushions invite before-dinner conversations.

Lighting above the island is handblown Leucos fixtures of “folded” white glass. They were picked to complement a colorful Archimede glass chandelier
the homeowners picked to illuminate their dining room table.

The makeover, which also includes the family room, took nine months. Much of the decision-making was done via long distance calls and e-mail to the family in Minnesota. “The result is beautiful and functional,” the designer says.

Judges of the COTY (Contractor of the Year) awards for the San Diego chapter of the
National Association of Remodeling Industries agreed. Wagoner and Jackson Design and Remodeling took home the top prize for this kitchen in the cat-
egory of $100,000-plus kitchen makeovers.

Working together

Before one wall was dismantled in Karen and Jerry Flynn’s Peñasquitos home, the kitchen and family room were two shoe-box-shaped spaces. The wall that divided those rooms even blotted out some of the Flynns’ expansive westerly views past their patio and orchard to colorful sunsets beyond.

“Everything was cramped and whoever was in the kitchen was cut off from the rest of the house,” said designer Anjum Razvi of Razvi Design Studio, who has worked with the couple on the redo of the kitchen and other rooms in the four bedroom home.

“When the wall came down, it was a completely different space.”

Because the Flynns enjoy casual entertaining, Razvi reconfigured the new open room to include an island, a breakfast nook, much needed storage and comfortable seating in the bright citrus colors Karen Flynn loves.

To help the homeowners stay on budget, Razvi turned over much of the legwork to them, sending them off to her favorite resources for tile, granite, lighting and cabinets. Then the trio would meet to evaluate and firm up choices.

“This is a great way for designers and clients to work together,” Razvi says. “It can
keep costs down while providing expert advice, since I was available to guide the whole process.”

Razvi’s input is evident in the choice of granite for the countertops. “Jerry and Karen came back with lots of neutrals because they were concerned that they would tire of a color. But I felt they needed color. We ended up with the dark green of Verde San Francisco.”

Razvi also worked with them on “little splurges,” like the backsplash of limestone tile set in a pinwheel pattern and dotted with glass tile inserts that echoed the green granite. The porcelain flooring also got a design boost with the addition of green granite diamond inserts.

Centered in the new island is a GE Profile black-glass cook- top that puts the cook front and center when the Flynns entertain. A warming drawer and a
double oven including a microwave-convection oven were added to an adjacent wall of warm wood cabinets by Crystal that include storage for cookbooks.

New seating invites family and friends into the expanded space. A quartet of bar stools in wrought iron with Ultrasuede seats faces the island. A mosaic topped wrought-iron table and chairs are nestled in a corner next to windows that welcome sunshine.

Opposite them in the family room are three chairs that swivel to take in the outdoors or conversations. With Razvi’s guidance the chairs were purchased in a low-end fabric and then recovered in custom Kravet fabrics in shades of tangerine and yellow.

“They are a fun-loving couple and love colors like these,” Razvi said.

The same hues are found in the pendant lights over the breakfast nook and art glass on display in the picture window above the sink. Like the pendants, the chandelier above the island was placed so it wouldn’t block views to the patio and beyond.

The same traditional style spiced with contemporary accents has been extended into
an update of the adjacent dining room and living room, where the fireplace has been refaced and new furniture and a flatscreen TV have been installed.

“The Flynns have lived here for a long time,” Razvi said. “They told me they hardly ever used the living room, but I think we’re going to change that.”

The San Diego Union-Tribune - Sunday, March 16, 2008

Jackson Design and Remodeling