Savvy architects and builders know where their bread is buttered: in the kitchen, especially in one that is connected none-too-subtly to a comfortable gathering area and to the outdoors. This one doesn't disappoint on any score, offering a generous, L-shaped room, anchored by a massive, granite-topped island, that flows to a casual family room and through neat, sliding glass pocket patio doors to the loggia. Oh, and there's also a pair of terrace doors directly from the kitchen to the pool as an alternative route to the outside. Unlike the parlor, the family room features both the traditional hearth of a wide fireplace and the modern one of a flat-screen TV set in a cabinet along the stair wall. The room offers three escapes besides the patio doors to the loggia: one to the three-car garage; one to the motor court (in which a clever dog house and closet occupy the understair space); and one through a short passage past the elevator to the single-car garage/ workshop. And, for convenience, there's a full bath just around the corner that shares duties for the pool, loggia, family room, and guest suite.
- FIREPLACE. Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association. Circle no. 166.
- APPLIANCES. A full line of Energy Star–rated Monogram series appliances (GE Appliances, circle no. 167) includes a 48-inch, four-burner propane range with grill and griddle inserts and a pair of ovens below (all independently controlled) flanked by built-in refrigerator-freezers, plus the requisite dishwasher and stacked wall ovens.
- WASTE DISPOSER. In-Sink-Erator. Circle no. 168.
- PLUMBING FIXTURES & FITTINGS. The big island is home to a trio of sinks and accompanying faucets by Kohler Co. (circle no. 169). The main sink, across from the range, displays a farmhouse look. It's supplemented by the company's 33-inch, stainless-steel trough sink for food prep purposes and, on the end of the island, a PRO CookSink that not only allows you to fill a pot with water from the adjacent faucet, but heat it up in place instead of dragging it to the stovetop. Kohler's HiRise pot filler faucet along the range's backsplash does similar duty.
- DUMBWAITER. An electric dumbwaiter offers a convenient conduit between the kitchen and the game room directly above it. Summit Lifts. Circle no. 170.