There’s so much that’s good here. I love the combination of marble and concrete countertops, a mix of high and low elements that feels warm but still luxurious. The black faucet is perfect for adding a bit of contrast, and the fluted wood paneling on the side of the island really sets this kitchen apart. Again, there’s storage for days that extends all the way up to the ceiling.
hite makes for a bright and modern kitchen — one that feels wide open and clean — but all white can read a bit cold. To warm things up, this design adds touches of warm wood, most notably at the edge of the white laminate countertop. I bet you had no idea laminate could look this good. In lieu of the expected subway tile, a tile backsplash in a diamond pattern adds a bit of texture.
Those Cherner bar stools are to die for — but there’s also a lot to see in the architecture of the space itself. The combination of wood, marble, and stainless, particularly with the extra-high marble backsplash and steel cabinets, is particularly striking. One takeaway for those on less-than-show-house budgets: if you love the look of marble but can’t afford to do a whole kitchen in it, choose marble countertops for just an island, and do the rest of the kitchen in a contrasting material.
With their minimalist cabinetry, neutral color palettes, and metallic accents, these contemporary kitchens have a subtle elegance that will never go out of style. They blend aspects of modern design with other styles, including traditional and industrial, for a look that’s current and sleek, but not sterile.
A pop of color—whether it’s on the furniture, in a bowl of fresh fruit, or in a vase of flowers—ensures that these contemporary kitchen designs still feel warm and welcoming, as do big windows that let in the sun, an architectural light fixture, or a piece of bold artwork or decor. Each of these 35 kitchens from the AD archives is a lesson in restraint, from a bold Manhattan space by Jamie Drake to a crisp white design in Madrid by Isabel López-Quesada.
Just a few decorative accessories (and zero clutter) on shelves and countertops let the smart mix of materials—and tonight’s dinner—shine. Click through to see contemporary kitchen design ideas that blend style and function for a space that is cutting-edge yet inviting.