Merit Award: Concealed Kitchen

This multifunctional space-saving kitchen is high on style and clever features.

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Location: Reykjavik , Iceland
Contractor: Owner built
Designer: Erla Dogg Ingjaldsdottir and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, Minarc , Santa Monica, Calif.

This 11th floor penthouse in Reykjavik, Iceland, serves as temporary living for traveling business professionals, so this small 200-square-foot kitchen had to serve as both an entertaining space and a work area.

Designer Erla Dogg Ingjaldsdottir designed a simple Corian island fitted with custom chairs that slide easily on ball bearings. When pushed in, the backs of the chairs resemble cabinetry. The island can be used as a desk or a dining table.

To maintain a clean look, the designer hid all the kitchen equipment. The sink and two-burner stove are under a lid in the stainless steel counter. The dishwasher, oven, and refrigerator are all concealed behind cabinet fronts. The judges said it takes a lot of thought to make such a sculptural, minimalist design look effortless.

The designer added drama with a lava-tiled channel that flows from under the powder room wall into the living room. Ingjaldsdottir says that the lava pieces are set on a glass sheet that is lit red by LED lighting. She used a different form of lava for the kitchen backsplash. The ground lava is mixed with resin and applied in a 1/2-inch-thick layer.

—Nina Patel, senior editor, REMODELING.