Built to reflect a passion for the Mediterranean, “Kitchen Week” continues with another timeless beauty.
The desire for an intimate “old” home led a Southern California couple to down-size, yet they still needed room for their large family to gather. Merle and Ron Mardigian partnered with Liza Kerrigan to design a kitchen addition for their new Spanish-style house. The room was enlarged and the roof raised to create a dramatic groin-vaulted ceiling. Cherry base cabinets were made a few inches taller and deeper, and toe-kick drawers were included to make up for the lack of upper cabinetry.
A custom stainless steel hood designed by Merle resembles draped linen. Its folds are a gentle touch over the six-burner Viking range. Plaster walls are finished in a tea-stained linen color for instant age and to blend the kitchen addition seamlessly with the rest of the 1920s home.
The wooden paneled passageway to the dining room hides pantries with touch-latch doors. The kitchen side of the wall houses cookbooks and part of the homeowner’s exotic cooking utensil collection assembled on their travels. A pair of hand carved antique doors from Arte de Mexico create more hidden storage.
The Mardigians literally followed the Greco-Roman trail of ancient sites where Merle could find design inspiration for her company, Mosaix. The company’s unique Positano line of flooring etches patterns into sandblasted, hand-cut limestone pavers. Those are then colored and coated with a sealer for protection. The tiles have the handmade quality of individually laid mosaic floors without the normal maintenance worries. In Merle’s kitchen, an antique table adds more rustic flair and overhead lighting couldn’t be more simple. The far corner of the kitchen features an adobe fireplace where the couple displays some of their African art collection on the mantel. A skylight over the bench makes it a perfect spot to visit with the owner, who is not only an interior designer but a gourmet cook.