Island Inspiration

For large gatherings of family and friends, this Nantucket home offers extraordinary settings and spaces.

Metropolitan Kitchen_Intro

Framed inset cabinetry was chosen to simulate the look and feel of furniture, and, in order to minimize the “kitchen” look.

Plenty of people on Nantucket look forward to hobnobbing at après-beach cocktail hours, but when the architect of this house says that the homeowner “loves to throw a party,” you get the sense that his are not hushed, crystal-clinking affairs. Perched on one of the highest points of the island overlooking Nantucket Sound, the house and its resplendent infinity pool face northwest toward the sunset. From the outside, the Shingle Style structure resembles other luxury homes on the island, but inside it has a special character all its own, one that lends itself to social gatherings in any season.

There is not a trace of cottage-style beadboard nor will you confront any blatantly nautical design elements. Instead, interior designer John Berenson of Boston collaborated closely with the homeowners to interpret what he calls a “sandy, beachy, outside-in” look, using colors and finishes that are more likely to evoke old driftwood than the American flag.

“We didn’t want to take ourselves out of Nantucket completely,” says the homeowner, referring to the design process. “We didn’t want [the look of] a Manhattan apartment.” But at the same time, he was delighted when Joe Paul of BPC Architecture had ideas that, he says, “were a little outside the box.” And having worked with Berenson before, the homeowners were comfortable with his “classic but out of the ordinary” strategy for the interior design.

The homeowners felt a similar kinship with Nantucket contractor Jamie Feeley of Cottage & Castle and with Metropolitan Cabinets & Countertops of Norwood, Mass., who designed the kitchen, an all-important space for people who love to cook and entertain as much as this large family does.

“It was imperative to the homeowners that the look and feel of the kitchen blend seamlessly with the other living spaces,” says designer Jennifer Gardner of Metropolitan Cabinets & Countertops. The front door opens into a single continuous space with no structural elements separating the kitchen from the family room, dining room and small bar area. The view through a huge expanse of glass takes in the decks, infinity pool and the distant ocean.

Metropolitan Kitchens_Island

A custom, natural walnut island countertop ties in perfectly with the wave-patterned Fantasy Brown granite backsplash.

Drawing from the color of the reclaimed wood floor, Berenson used a creamy palette of neutral earth tones throughout the home. In the kitchen, Metropolitan ShowHouse cabinets finished with Frosty White paint and a Brushed Chai Glaze complement the furniture and fabrics in the family and dining areas.  Framed inset cabinetry was chosen to simulate the look and feel of furniture, and, in order to minimize the “kitchen” look, most of the appliances are paneled, which complements the sophisticated feel of the adjacent living spaces.

The backsplash posed a significant challenge in designing the kitchen. The homeowners’ desire to evoke the sand and beach was satisfied only once slabs of Fantasy Brown granite in a darker than usual palette of brown and cream were located. The full-height granite backsplash with its rolling pattern indeed casts the look and feel of the sand and waves over the entire kitchen.

To accommodate as much seating as possible, the homeowners wanted a very long island.  At the same time, they didn’t want a seam in the island countertop, and it was impossible to find a granite slab large enough to cover the island. After rejecting the idea of a multi-level island, a single-level custom wood countertop measuring 11 and a half feet long was ordered. The natural walnut used ties in perfectly with the granite counters and backsplash. With a dining table seating 10, several stools at the island and bar, and comfy pieces of family room furniture, this is indeed a great place to throw a party.

Metropolitan Kitchen_living room

Drawing from the color of the reclaimed wood floor, interior designer John Berenson used a creamy palette of neutral earth tones throughout the home.

Metropolitan kitchen_exterior

With the house built on a high bluff, the view from the kitchen takes in a large infinity pool, and beyond that, the ocean.

Kitchen Design: Metropolitan Cabinets & Countertops
Photography by Tom Olcott
By Janice Randall Rohlf

Article published in 2014-15 issue.

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