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The kitchen trends for 2021

Comfort meets luxurious design

The kitchen: For some, it is a place for enjoying good food and good company; for others, it is more of a means to an end. Technological advances and the longing for a sense of community are defining the kitchen trends for 2021. The kitchen is evolving into a luxurious haven of well-being.

An open-plan kitchen design with black fronts and large panoramic windows.

Natural light, dark fronts and a simple design: The kitchen trends for 2021 combine luxury and comfort.

Going beyond functionality: the trend for open-concept kitchens

The kitchen has long since ceased to be a strictly separated area of the home. On the contrary, it is increasingly the focal point as the heart of the home. The conventional fitted kitchen became obsolete as a model some time ago. An open-plan design and rooms that merge into each other are the kitchen trend for 2021, bringing the pleasures of food and life together. This turns the kitchen into the home’s natural centrepiece and makes the environment more sociable. Allowing the kitchen and the living room to merge into each other means incorporating more comfort and multifunctionality into kitchen design.

thonet chair

Functionality meets comfort. With his chairs, designer Marco Dessí demonstrates what a beautifully crafted link between the kitchen and the living area of the home can look like. (Photo: THONET GmbH)

Large, extended tables are especially popular. They create the ideal connection between life and cooking. Solid-wood chairs are giving way to simpler seating that is both comfortable and practical. Here, too, a trend for greater comfort is emerging, transforming any kitchen into a haven of well-being.

White tiles are so yesterday

With the growing popularity of open-plan living, it is no surprise that new items of furniture are appearing in the kitchen. More and more often, the kitchen is being designed as a room within a room that has a fluid transition to the living area. As is the case with almost every contemporary design trend, clear, simple styles have established themselves as firm favourites.

To create harmony between the different rooms, kitchen designers are adopting natural materials such as wood, concrete and different varieties of stone. Tiles are becoming a rarity: Washable wall paints, patterned wallpapers and large slabs of concrete or stone protect the walls from unpleasant sprays during cooking. Worktops and kitchen fronts are also taking on a contemporary look. Where just a few years ago people could not get enough shine, today these surfaces can hardly be matt enough. Classic wall units are being replaced by shelves that underscore the space’s open feel. Designers are opting for soft, muted colour schemes to transform the kitchen into a sanctuary of well-being. Dark fronts and worktops are balanced with light colour accents. And no kitchen can be without gold- or copper-coloured taps in a matt finish for that touch of luxury.

Bringing new order to the kitchen

In an age in which, inspired by Marie Kondo, we are striving to reduce all our well-being to the essentials, order is the key. The result: A clean, pared-back design is appearing in kitchen units, too. This is one place in particular where lots of “things” need plenty of space. Neat, tidy and practical instead of chaotic and complicated is the mantra for kitchen trends in 2021, and it is applied to everything from ingredients to kitchen appliances. To meet this ideal, growing numbers of kitchen designers are opting for ample storage areas and intelligent space-saving features. Extra-wide pull-outs, dividers for drawers or shelves, and pull-out storage baskets with multiple levels make the best possible use of every nook and cranny. It is not just the insides of the cabinets that are being optimally designed for storage – the doors are, too. Intelligent door solutions with robust hanging systems provide a place to stow tea towels, cleaning products and even ingredients.

Smart kitchens: technology that simplifies daily life

Lying in bed and dimming the lights from your phone? Switching on the heating via an app while you are out and about? Controlling your home multimedia system with your voice? All these things have now become the norm for most people. Alexa, Siri and Co. have long since become firm fixtures in our daily lives. But what do things look like in the kitchen? Here, too, technology is making great inroads and is one of the big trends for kitchens in 2021. From the taps to the refrigerator all the way through to the cooker and oven, the possibilities for connectivity are almost infinite.

Smart fridges

Refrigerators are now more than mere cooling systems. Equipped with smart technology, they are even taking on everyday tasks. Many people do not have the time or the motivation for a big shop after a stressful day at work. They can now order their weekly food supplies from the comfort of their home via an integrated screen on the appliance. Their order is automatically sent to their preferred supermarket and then conveniently delivered to their front door.

But even those who prefer to do their weekly shop themselves can count on the assistance of innovative technology. While they are out and about, they can now easily check whether some extra ingredients are needed for lunch thanks to integrated cameras. The right app gives them a live view of the inside of their fridge from the supermarket. The latest generation even goes one step further: These fridges remember the preferences of all the members of the household and any food intolerances they may have. Based on this information and the available ingredients, smart refrigerators can propose personal recipe suggestions. Developments like these are turning the fridge into an in-house chef who even warns the user if supplies of particular ingredients are running low.

Miele CookAssist

Miele CookAssist connects a smartphone or tablet with the induction hob. (Photo: Miele)

Intelligent ovens and hobs

But it is not just the fridge that can be easily controlled from a smartphone. This is now also possible with other kitchen appliances. Smart ovens constantly measure the temperature and forward this information to the app. Some appliances are now even equipped with artificial intelligence, making the eternal search for the right timings and temperature settings in the cookbook a thing of the past. Simply choose a dish, and the oven sets the correct temperature and programme all on its own – every cake is guaranteed to be a success.

Have I turned the cooker off? Probably everyone has asked themselves this question. Connected hobs are the answer that the kitchen industry is proposing to it. The hob’s temperature can be adjusted from anywhere with an app, thereby saving every dish from burning. A kitchen trend for 2021 that turns anyone into a master chef.

Merging home living and the joys of food

In the coronavirus pandemic, we long for an evening in our favourite restaurant. This is inspiring many of us to rekindle an all too often neglected passion: cooking. We are discovering that the kitchen can be an anchor in times of crisis. The industry is responding with kitchen trends that merge home living and cooking.

Different materials, kitchen fronts in a large selection of colours, chrome or stainless-steel taps: There is an endless spectrum of possibilities for creating an individual space. The enormous variety of interior concepts calls for intelligent design. In big cities with limited living space, there is a large demand for space-saving kitchen furniture. Concealed kitchens are the keyword here: Behind the two double-wing doors of what initially appears to be a conventional wardrobe, a mini kitchen is tucked away. The little home cooking paradise is almost invisible when the doors are closed, creating a snug and cosy ambience.

Comfort is also vital in large kitchens. Expansive islands for food preparation and cooking combine home living with culinary pleasures. The maxim “Big is beautiful” also applies to intelligently integrated storage space: raised-height carcasses, open shelving systems and large drawers. Continuous fronts in matt colours lend the kitchen an elegant and inviting ambience. On a large or a small scale, open and communicative design is the trend.

The kitchen as the new cornerstone of life

Kitchens are as varied as the world of gastronomy. Yet the 2021 kitchen trends send a clear message: High-quality natural materials and gentle tones define the look. Kitchen furniture creates a warm, welcoming whole with the rest of the home, turning the kitchen into a real oasis of well-being, with a touch of luxury included.

Discover more items of furniture for creating lifestyle kitchens on ambista.

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