Kitchen Closeup | Stanmore Residence by Michiru Higginbotham

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    We deconstruct the different layers of this contemporary kitchen within a Victorian terrace in Sydney’s Stanmore. 

    Stanmore Residence by Sydney designers Michiru Higginbotham sits on a sloped site, presenting as a charming all-white Victorian facade with a concealed rear addition. A light-filled courtyard signifies the shift from old to new, leading into the new extension.

    Guided by co-founder and director Michiru Cohen, we’re taking a tour through the extension’s kitchen, living and dining space. Michiru shares insight on the important role natural light plays in a compact terrace and how neutral materials and long-lasting appliances ensure the home will continue to meet the young family’s needs for years to come.

    Produced in partnership with NEFF

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    The internal courtyard and two drop-down stairs signify the transition from old to new.

    The effortless transition from the terrace into the new extension is marked by two drop-down stairs clad in grey tiles. An internal courtyard serves as a bridge between the formal living and dining space at the front of the home into the relaxed rear entertainment zone, drenching this threshold in natural light. “It was important for us to have a cohesive design approach to the where the old and new parts of the home met,” Michiru affirms. “Implementing this courtyard and the change in floor levels has resulted in a surprisingly open corridor and feeling of openness in the new living space”.

    Engineered oak floorboards in the modern extension match those in the original terrace, which have been restored, sanded and whitewashed. Storage was a priority in the design brief to cater to the young family. Architecture studio ARC Architects introduced a walk-in pantry and built it ‘into’ the threshold, while a wall of full-height cabinetry runs along the entire wall. “The continuous joinery along the kitchen and living wall blurs the line where the kitchen stops and the living space begins, creating the illusion of a larger space,” Michiru explains. 

    Streamlined black handles and a teak-coloured shadow line below the concrete-look stone benchtops add a simple design edge to the all-white kitchen. This stone also acts as the splashback, making for easy, no-fuss cleaning. “Having a splashback in a slab format makes cleaning a lot quicker; the client didn’t want to clean grout between tiles,” Michiru adds.

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    For kitchen appliances, Michiru Higginbotham looked to German manufacturers NEFF for both their design-led aesthetic and tried and tested functionality. The team specified the NEFF 90cm FlexInduction cooktop, NEFF Slide&Hide® oven with FullSteam and NEFF pyrolytic Slide&Hide® oven with VarioSteam in a tower formation.

    “The result of implementing the courtyard and the change in floor levels has resulted in a surprisingly open corridor and feeling of openness in the new living space.”

     

    – Michiru Higginbotham director Michiru Cohen

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    The Laurent 07 and Laurent 03 pendants by Montreal-based studio Lambert & Fils give the kitchen a design edge.

    Michiru Higginbotham looked to German manufacturers NEFF for their design-led aesthetic and tried and tested functionality for kitchen appliances. “NEFF represents a brand of appliances with a track record of smart design, robustness and durability,” Michiru says. The team specified the NEFF 90cm FlexInduction cooktop for its superior cooking capabilities and flush design. The FlexInduction zone automatically detects the number, size and shape of the pots and pans used and heats up precisely where needed.

    The NEFF Slide&Hide® oven with FullSteam and NEFF pyrolytic Slide&Hide® oven with VarioSteam are stacked in a tower formation, integrating into the white joinery. “The neutral finishes of the NEFF ovens in black and stainless steel fit seamlessly into the kitchen space without disrupting the design intent,” Michiru adds.

    Through gentle intervention, Michiru Higginbotham breathed life and light into this Victorian-era home. The classic combination of stone, oak, and matte black will serve as a timeless foundation for years of cooking, entertaining and sharing food with family and friends.

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    Clerestory windows along the back wall of the rear extension introduce an additional stream of natural light.

  • michiru higginbotham's signature kitchen style

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michiru higginbotham's signature kitchen style