Luxury Kitchen Features & Why They’re Essential in the Bay Area

You might think that a luxury kitchen earns its name from its amenities and features, but the truth is simpler than that. A luxury kitchen is any kitchen found in what the market considers a “luxury home.” What is a luxury home? Any home that is over double the average list price in the area. 

Home prices have skyrocketed in the last year, resulting in a huge shift in median home values, particularly in the Bay Area.  Most luxury home prices typically start at $2.5 million and in this current real estate market, are often selling for 10-30% over the asking price!

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Why is it important to have high-end amenities in a luxury home?

If you want to renovate your home and ensure it falls into the luxury category, OR if you already own a home in that luxury price range, you want to ensure it has the amenities and features worthy of the “luxury” designation.

Homebuyers in this price bracket know what amenities they want and expect when buying a home. Things like brand names, high-end materials and finishes, up-to-date style, and more are what will appeal to these savvy buyers.

In fact, real estate agents have started including brand names in their listings and might also include the interior design firm’s name that completed any recent remodeling or renovation work.  These extra selling points increase the home’s desirability and list price, often leading to multiple buyers competing to purchase the home!

A perfect example includes a home that we renovated in the East Bay that was recently put on the market. In the listing, the real estate agent included the home’s many luxury features and also noted that the remodeling and upgrades were completed by Douglah Designs. The seller quickly received competing bids that ultimately resulted in the home selling for over $525,000 over the asking price!

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Our luxury kitchen transformation in Danville

Of course, it’s always important to consider your long-term return on investment, even if you are planning to stay in your home for the next 5-10 years.  The market may be inflating at the moment, but California’s housing market has been doing so for the last 30 years and shows no signs of stopping.

Now that you know the importance of high-end features and amenities in a luxury kitchen, let’s talk about what those features are…

5 Essential Features of a Luxury Kitchen

1. Custom Cabinets

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Custom cabinets are a must for their timeless look, high quality, and superior function. Homebuyers know what custom cabinets should look and feel like, and storage is high on nearly every buyer’s priority list. Think of deep drawers for pots and pans, lazy susans for accessibility, built-in cutlery dividers and spice pull-outs for organization, and soft-close glides for longevity…just to name a few. 

Stock cabinets (non-custom) simply can’t provide this level of functionality, aesthetic, or long-term durability. Wondering how we choose cabinets for your home? Read more here.

2. A Large Central Island

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The kitchen is the heart of a home and having a large island creates a place for everyday and special gatherings. In addition to providing an informal dining area and additional seating, an island allows for more storage and ample countertop space for preparing meals.

An island also adds stunning design detail to the kitchen. For example, you can change the color of the island to contrast with the rest of the kitchen, making it stand out as a design feature or blend in to make the kitchen feel more spacious. You could opt for a wood island with painted cabinets or vice versa. It’s also a great place to bring in a pop of color.

3. Large Custom Range Hood over the Cooktop

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Even when next to an island or a large window-scape, a well-designed custom range hood creates the “WOW” factor and focal point while maintaining its essential function. This high-impact design feature can be wood to match the cabinets, stainless steel, copper, stucco, or limestone. You also have the flexibility of choosing a rich texture, bold color, or stylish form to create a unique hood to fit the design aesthetic of your home.

Whichever material or aesthetic you choose, a large-scale, oversized range hood makes a significant impact in a luxury kitchen, creating a sense of grandeur worthy of being called luxury.

4. Gourmet Appliances 

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In addition to the luxurious and beautiful design of various high-end appliances, homeowners will also experience a state-of-the-art cooking experience with the latest technology and high-quality materials.  

Gourmet appliance brands include Sub-Zero, Wolf, Miele, and Gaggenau. You may also consider custom wood paneling on appliances to make them disappear into the surrounding cabinets. 

It’s important to note that buyers at this luxury price point understand the value of gourmet appliances and will certainly want the same feeling in any home they purchase.  Upgrading to gourmet appliances will create the much-desired luxury kitchen these homebuyers are looking for.

5. Large Scale Light Fixtures

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What is a kitchen island without a beautiful statement light fixture? When you hang decorative light fixtures above an island, it’s like pairing a stunning piece of jewelry with an elegant outfit. It’s the finishing statement piece that sets the tone of the space, adding elegance and sophistication that elevates the whole room.

Choose lighting that clearly defines your desired aesthetic to tie the whole design together. As you decide on the lighting style, consider the home’s architectural style. If your home is traditional, go with a chandelier or pendant with soft curves and clean lines. If your home is sleek and modern, look for lighting with clean lines as well. Here’s another example:

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In these light fixtures, we selected designs that pair clean modern lines with more traditional curves and style. The result is “transitional,” a blend of up-t0-date design that fits the home’s traditional architecture.

What’s next?

Whether you’re renovating your kitchen to enjoy for years to come or are looking to update and eventually sell your luxury home, be sure to include at least some of these elements to earn the name luxury kitchen in the listing. We can help you budget your investment to account for these features, splurge where the ROI will be the greatest, and save where it matters less.

We are known for creating luxury kitchens with our design-build team of experts, and I’m confident we can help you do the same. Book a discovery call with us here and let’s discuss your project to see if we’re the right team for you. 

Warmly,

Leila