Today’s best floor plans recognize the importance that the kitchen plays in modern life by placing it in the center of the action. What’s in? Casual dining spaces, plenty of storage, lots of light, and the now-ubiquitous island. Here are some of our favorites.

1. Appealing Multi-Generational Layout

The details stand out: elegant columns provide a bit of definition
without closing anything off, a bookshelf holds treasured cookbooks, and
several doors open to the patio for easy indoor/outdoor entertaining.
Bob Greenspan The details stand out: elegant columns provide a bit of definition without closing anything off, a bookshelf holds treasured cookbooks, and several doors open to the patio for easy indoor/outdoor entertaining.


With easy access to the great room on one side and the open dining room on the other, this kitchen feels perfectly relaxed. The details stand out: elegant columns provide a bit of definition without closing anything off, a bookshelf holds treasured cookbooks, and several doors open to the patio for easy indoor/outdoor entertaining. Two equally appealing master suites sit on opposite sides of the first level, making this home ideal for multi-generational living. Another bedroom suite and a game room occupy the second floor, where older children will appreciate the privacy. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


2. Casual Dining

A tavern-like
bar table lends an appealing contemporary vibe to the kitchen of this
award-winning home from Visbeen Architects.
Chuck Heiney A tavern-like bar table lends an appealing contemporary vibe to the kitchen of this award-winning home from Visbeen Architects.


A tavern-like bar table lends an appealing contemporary vibe to the kitchen of this award-winning home from Visbeen Architects. The main floor offers a variety of gathering areas, including a large open-concept living area, a cozy hearth room, and an expansive deck off the side of the house. The upper level has two bedrooms plus a bunk room. On the lower level, there is an additional bunk room, a billiards area, seating area and kitchenette. Above the garage there is a guest apartment. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


3. Elevated, Updated Classic

It’s hard to imagine a layout more
open than this one, with the kitchen flowing without interruption into the
dining room, the breakfast nook, and even the more-formal living space.
Keesee and Associates, Inc. It’s hard to imagine a layout more open than this one, with the kitchen flowing without interruption into the dining room, the breakfast nook, and even the more-formal living space.


It’s hard to imagine a layout more open than this one, with the kitchen flowing without interruption into the dining room, the breakfast nook, and even the more-formal living space. Naturally, the island will become the center of activity, though the cozy nook with built-in seating will also be a favorite with families. An elevator makes it easy to get upstairs, where bedroom 2 offers extra privacy and space for an in-law or boomerang kid. The ultra-luxurious master suite includes its own exercise room – no gym membership required! Two more suites also sit on this level. Every bedroom accesses outdoor living spaces. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


4. 1,335 Sq. Ft. and Full of Fun

This modern standout uses space
very, very wisely with a wall that opens wide to the outdoor living spaces.
This modern standout uses space very, very wisely with a wall that opens wide to the outdoor living spaces.


This modern standout uses space very, very wisely with a wall that opens wide to the outdoor living spaces. A third bedroom/guest suite sits across the breezeway, making it a great home office or guest suite. The kitchen includes an island for extra prep space. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


5. Warm and Rustic

This appealing rustic design is
actually quite modern in spirit, with a kitchen that prioritizes counter space
and openness to other rooms.
Vic Moss/Moss Photography This appealing rustic design is actually quite modern in spirit, with a kitchen that prioritizes counter space and openness to other rooms.


This appealing rustic design is actually quite modern in spirit, with a kitchen that prioritizes counter space and openness to other rooms. The dining room sits in the middle of the action where it will actually see use. Another contemporary touch: the master suite sits on this level for easy access. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


6. Filled with Light

Photo by Jeffrey deRoulet
Photo by Jeffrey deRoulet


Stone accents and multiple windows throughout the kitchen reflect the Prairie character of this sleek design. Nearby, a network of closets provides enough storage for multiple Costco trips, culminating in the enormous utility room. Guests will enjoy the suite on this level, while the master suite offers a spa-like bathroom and huge closet upstairs. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


7. Easy Entrance from the Garage

Photo by Sarah Merrill 
Photo by Sarah Merrill 


It’s an easy walk from the garage straight through the mud room into the kitchen of this Visbeen Architects plan, making everyday grocery unloading simple for busy homeowners. A sunroom and open dining space flow naturally from the kitchen. Also on this level, the master suite includes a luxurious bathroom and large walk-in closet. Downstairs, the finished walkout basement holds two more bedrooms and spacious recreational areas that kids and visitors will love. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


8. Combined Casual Dining


  Instead of a formal dining room and separate breakfast
nook, this layout merges the two into an open eating area that sits between the
great room and the island kitchen.
Drummond House Plans
Instead of a formal dining room and separate breakfast nook, this layout merges the two into an open eating area that sits between the great room and the island kitchen.


Just forty feet wide, this design is a great choice for a not-so-wide lot. Instead of a formal dining room and separate breakfast nook, this layout merges the two into an open eating area that sits between the great room and the island kitchen, where it will become part of everyday family life. Additional seating at the island (slightly modified here) gives more room for relaxed meals. The remarkably spacious utility room sits nearby. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


9. A Little Privacy, Please


  This elegant modern design strikes the right balance between
sociability (the seated snack bar) and privacy (the great room isn’t within
eyesight).
Philip Wegener
This elegant modern design strikes the right balance between sociability (the seated snack bar) and privacy (the great room isn’t within eyesight).


Not everyone wants a super-open kitchen. For those clients, this elegant modern design strikes the right balance between sociability (the seated snack bar) and privacy (the great room isn’t within eyesight). But don’t think that means this is a dark, closed-off space: large windows above the sink let in light, and the dining room sits just steps away. In another nod to privacy, the master suite occupies a secluded wing that’s accessed via a long hallway and features its own patio. See more images, information, and the floor plan.


10. Courtyard View


This narrow design (part of the Energy Saver Plus collection) wraps around a courtyard for outstanding indoor/outdoor connections. From the kitchen, excellent sightlines guide the eye from the cooktop island (why face a wall while cooking?) out the large windows to the courtyard beyond. A detached guest suite offers extra privacy to a visitor or live-in relative. The master suite also includes access to the courtyard, as well as a private foyer that blocks the bedroom from view of the great room. See more images, information, and the floor plan.