Venetian Kitchen and Living Space


Liz and Simon live in Exeter but also enjoy spending time at their Venice retreat. Located in the Castello district, this holiday home stands alongside the ancient waterways and overlooks the famous canals and bridges.

the brief:

In Simon’s words… “We wanted a modern, uncluttered kitchen that could also be used as a reasonably comfortable living room. The house is not large by UK standards so we do not have many habitable rooms. Condensing all the communal daily living in to one room leaves the other rooms as contemplative spaces or extra bedrooms when the family descends. The previous cluttered and uncomfortable kitchen was from the 60’s, so hopelessly out of date with dangerous appliances”.

the design:

Our clients had very clear goals about achieving a minimal, clutter-free kitchen. That said, the new kitchen needed to equal the property’s charm without detracting from the historic architecture and views. As the hub of the house, this room acts as a kitchen, laundry, dining room and living space so we had to find solutions for all these functions.

From their first visit to our showroom Liz and Simon fell in love with bulthaup’s wall hung unit system. They knew it would keep an open feel and allow full view of the traditional terrazzo flooring. The choice of handleless, walnut cabinets feel more like an elegant piece of furniture than a run of kitchen units. The walnut also adds warmth to the space and compliments the exposed ceiling beams. Bulthaup’s super-slim 10mm quartz worktop is another subtle detail that softens the furniture and feels less ‘kitcheny’ than standard work surfaces.

Sophisticated wall panelling relaxes harsh, plain walls and includes clever storage to keep washing-up objects close to hand but out of sight. The panelling also includes gentle side lighting which gives the room a cosy feel when sitting and relaxing.

On another wall, a bank of subtle tall units run in line with the adjacent panelling. These cupboards provide storage, house the oven, and hide a washing machine and laundry area. Although a multi-functional space, this kitchen is fully equipped and also includes a stylish gas hob, fridge/freezer and dishwasher drawer.

We were thrilled when this luxury Venetian kitchen featured in Utopia magazine and when asked what they would do differently, our client’s said “We can honestly say, nothing – we love it!”

Working on this Venetian gem was most definitely a high point. We immediately knew bulthaup’s deep rooted design values would make it the perfect kitchen choice for a city synonymous with art and culture.

“From our first visit to Sapphire Spaces we knew we were dealing with quality products and a positive, flexible team who are easy to work with and who work well together…they also make great coffee!
Their good management, quick response times, attention to detail and problem solving meant we felt supported all the way, from the initial spark of a visual idea to its realisation.

Our luxury Venetian kitchen is stunning and the end result is much more than we had ever hoped for, we get so much pleasure every time we use it. We chose the suspended unit and it is like a dream hovering above our traditional Venetian Terazzo floor. The mix of modern and traditional creates a stunning effect. The whole process has been easy and great fun.”

Liz Whitehead

project type
Utility Spaces, Furniture & Interiors, Kitchens

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With bulthaup, the purity of the design, honesty of materials and absolute quality of the engineering is legendary.