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The big picture Renovating this house was all about opening it up to the views front and back, with a kitchen right at the centre It makes sense to position kitchens and living areas where you can enjoy the best view, and this may well be on the top floor of a house. This inner-city San Francisco house, which has been extensively renovated by architect Jonathan Feldman and his team at Feldman Architecture, already had the living areas on the top floor. But the rooms were compartmentalised and the kitchen was a small galley area in between a bedroom and the living room. To create the large, contemporary living space the new owners required, the entire floor was gutted – along with the rest of the house. This opened up the top floor to the spectacular views at the front and back. As well as floor-toceiling glazing at either end, light penetrates the kitchen in the middle of the space through large skylights above a perforated metal ceiling. “This screen runs across the ceiling and wraps right down the wall beside the stairs, connecting all four storeys,” Feldman says. “Light travels through the screen not only from the skylights, but also from windows and artificial lighting behind the metal, including LED lighting within a reveal at the top. Additional natural light travels down to the floor below through a glazed floor beside the island.” Because the owners are both serious cooks, the kitchen is highly functional, yet it maintains an uncluttered, minimalist aesthetic. The cabinetry, which extends beyond the kitchen on both sides, conceals a wall of storage and large amenities, including a fridge-freezer, powder room, media centre and lift. High cabinets can be accessed by a ladder on a rail. “We crammed a lot into a sleek facade,” says Feldman. “There is even extra-deep storage behind the cooktop and sink.” The architect teamed a mid-toned grey wood veneer with a lighter laminate and durable quartzite benchtops. All the materials are hard wearing and easy to clean. Preceding pages and left: The entire living area is on the top floor of this extensively renovated house, to maximise great views across San Francisco. The kitchen is positioned in the centre of the space. Skylights above a perforated metal ceiling bring in plenty of natural light. Above: The open-plan family living area opens to balconies at both the front and rear. This small balcony, at the front of the house, replaces a former bay window in a bedroom. search | save | share at trendsideas.com