An island retreat…in a north-facing room

Remodeling and Home Design

North-facing rooms can occasionally feel cold, dark and sometimes just a little bit uninspiring. With natural light often compromised, making the most of the space available is all about finding complementary colours and textures that combine and align for maximum impact. We were approached by a super-stylish client with a fantastic amount of space, who wanted to bring a touch of contemporary cleanness to their north-facing kitchen, without compromising on light or warmth. A (kitchen) island in the sun…without the natural support of a south-facing position.


To achieve the cool, clean look our clients were after, we opted for two shades of grey that naturally complement one another – one light and one dark. While the tone can occasionally be associated with a colder touch, the pairing instead creates the appearance of light and warmth; making up for what its natural position lacks with a touch of elegance and intelligent design.

With our client wishing for a contemporary feel, we opted to make the kitchen and feature island from ash veneered timber, and introduced handleless design to bring the curves of each individual cupboard door and shape of the general build to the forefront. The super stylish owner wanted that ‘wow’ factor in their room, with a kitchen that screams bespoke and unique – our job was to maximise a fantastic amount of space with warmth and texture. Our centrepiece, a kidney-shaped island and breakfast bar, works as a functional storage space as well as the stylish focal point of the room – lavish-looking design that offers solutions for everyday needs.

North Facing kitchen warmth sun ideas

LG Himacs solid surface worktops complete the look, while a subtle shade of blue glitter on the breakfast bar compliments the black Corian shade surrounding it. Ever the conscious kitchen, the design even incorporates 6 waste and recycling bins – enough to cater for even the most extravagant visit from friends. Combined with a pop-up downdraught extractor fan, central gas wok burner and ceramic side cookers, the room is as well catered to entertaining guests as the huge American-style Neff Fridge-Freezer – providing they keep it well stocked!

With great design, however, comes great responsibility (to hide utilities and blend essentials) – something we considered in the build. At the far-end of the kitchen, the sink, washer and drier – all essential, but not always wanted at the forefront of the room – are stylishly integrated. To allow our clients to show off and access appliances when necessary, we created a set of super-stylish sliding doors – mess, clothes, and the night’s washing up forgotten in an instant (well, at least until the morning). However, with all appliances ordered especially for the occasion (some taking 6 months to arrive!) and the sink selected and sent from the USA for the ultimate luxury finish, it’s certainly not an area we’d be afraid to show off either.

Innovative Kitchen Storage Solution Utility Room

Grey Kitchen Storage Solution

Kitchen sink storage idea hidden utilities

Even including a TV area (for that ultimate touch of luxury) with edge-lit LED glass shelves, we’ve tried to create the ultimate calming retreat in what can be the most stressful room in the house – a place to unwind, relax and escape whatever the day throws at you.

Stylish kitchen ideas north facing room

It’s hard to bring a touch of sun to a room naturally lacking in it, but we’re pleased to have worked with our client’s impeccable taste to create an island in the kitchen that creates the illusion of warmth. And if the (kitchen) island retreat wasn’t enough, we’re currently designing TV and lounge furniture for the same house – an interior design escape, whatever mood you’re in.

Interested in your own kitchen retreat? Take a look at our gallery for inspiration and ideas, or contact us with your needs to see how we can help. We’ve been creating bespoke furniture and rooms for over 25 years, and understand it’s all about finding functional solutions that work around your personality, taste and needs.