After each gathering, you may notice the kitchen is inevitably where most people end up during parties. While you may appreciate the company, if you’re a frequent host you know a kitchen that is not designed for hosting means you’re tripping over your best friend with a blazingly hot tray right out of the oven or almost slicing a crocheted flower right off grandma’s new sweater as you try to squeeze your cutting board onto an already cramped counter.
Hosting doesn’t always have to be a Tetris game of cramped spaces and close calls. If a kitchen is designed with hosting in mind, you can transform your hosting experience into one that has enough room to invite loved ones to comfortably pull up a chair while you work your hosting magic. Here are six ideas to consider if you’re looking to upgrade your kitchen space and your own hosting experience.
For extra counter space
Counter space is the critical factor when it comes to being able to host comfortably. One way to provide more counter space is by incorporating a kitchen island — or two. Kitchen islands give you the space to spread out and get organized which will make prepping, serving, and dining a breeze. And islands don’t just give you and your food space, it also gives your guests somewhere to sit comfortably, and safely, out of the way.
Traditionally, a butler’s pantry was used to store fine china, silver, linens, and family heirlooms. Now, in more recent times, butler’s pantries are not only used for this kind of valuable storage space but also as a particularly useful area while entertaining guests. Butler’s pantries, as well as wet bars, free critical kitchen counter space and are also the perfect area to stage a buffet or drink station that will keep guests from wandering into the kitchen.
TO HIDE THE MESS
A delicious meal has its own kind of magic and, sometimes, seeing the mess and stress that comes with preparing the meal diminishes it. Afterall, there’s a reason why you don’t see the kitchen in most upscale restaurants. If you’re looking to replicate a fine dining experience at home, then an auxiliary kitchen may help you create just the right ambiance. An auxiliary kitchen tucks the real mess around the corner from the party so you can host in your spotless main kitchen. And, when using caterers, an auxiliary kitchen allows them to work out of sight and keep guests’ imaginations going.
Another way to conceal cooking messes and preserve the magic of a meal is with a pantry. While a pantry is conventionally used to add much needed storage near the kitchen, it can also be used to hide bulky appliances like ovens, microwaves, and dishwashers. When you need to tuck a mess out of sight, contain cooking odors, or separate these spaces, all you have to do is close the door.
FOR ADDED COMFOR AND CHARM
A kitchen fireplace was traditionally where you’d find pots filled with bubbling stews and soups, meat slowly roasting on a spit, and bake kettles covered in hot coal and slowly baking an assortment of cookies, cakes, and breads. While modern appliances allow us to prepare our food much more easily, having a fireplace in the kitchen is still a charming reminder of history that will make any guest feel at home.
When you are hosting a small number of guests, the kitchen can be an excellent entertaining space. All you need is a soft seating area that will help set a welcoming and intimate tone. Whether you choose soft chairs or a padded breakfast nook, these touches add a layer of warmth that will envelop your guests like a comforting hug. The added benefit of hosting in the kitchen is that it is usually one of the brightest rooms in the house with lots of windows and wonderful views.
GOOD KITCHEN DESIGN GIVES YOU PEACE OF MIND
While there is a certain amount of pressure that goes with hosting an event, you deserve to enjoy the experience just as much as your guests. And in order to comfortably enjoy hosting in your home, your kitchen needs to be designed accordingly. Adding even just one of these ideas to your kitchen can elevate your hosting abilities to a whole new level — and allow you to enjoy every moment of it.