After 20 years, it was time for the white laminate countertops in this Art Deco–ish kitchen to go. As part of the remodel, the owners wanted larger, professional-grade appliances and a hearty helping of wow factor, but didn’t want to expand the space beyond its existing footprint. They also didn’t want the plumbing and electrical runs to be moved from their existing locations.

That left Nielsen-Wilson Design with a few design challenges. To accommodate the larger appliances, surrounding storage areas had to make up for lost space. Custom glass, steel, and ash Zona Cucina cabinets by Heritage (sourced from Denver-based Kitchen Distributors) were specified with ultra–space-saving features, such as vertical pull-outs for baking pans and special sections to hold small utensils.

At 150 square feet, the new kitchen is modest in size but rich in appointments. Special touches in and around the island include a marble top that wraps to the floor around steel kick panels; a suspended cable light fixture fabricated to match the exact dimensions of the island below; and a custom downdraft. The perimeter counters are beveled at a 45-degree angle on the edge detail.

And the materials are all natural. “The client wanted to keep things monochromatic, so we looked at subtle textural changes that would add layers of detail without color,” says principal Mary Wilson. “For example, the tiny subway tiles in the backsplash are the same Carrera marble as the island top, but they create a different pattern.” A bamboo ceiling provides warmth to offset a Texas limestone floor.

Entrant/Designer: Nielsen-Wilson Design, Denver; Builder: Kane Creek Custom Homes, Greenwood Village, Colo.

Learn more about markets featured in this article: Denver, CO.