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Kitchen of the Week: A Modern Kitchen System Inspired by La Dolce Vita

When Italian kitchen innovator Boffi asked designer Patricia Urquiola to come up with a modular kitchen system, she gave a think and came up with a system inspired by a beach town in Salinas, Spain, where her grandfather had a summer house. “We would go there on the weekend and there would be lots of aunts, uncles, cousins,” she told Icon magazine, “with someone always cooking and my father out fishing for dinner.”

Urquiola recalls a busy kitchen full of chopping blocks, stone and copper surfaces, and open shelving. That is the inspiration for her Salinas kitchen for Italian manufacturer Boffi, which was revealed at Salone del Mobile in 2014. This year Boffi updated the collection with new surface materials and a series of full-height storage cabinets. Unlike Boffi’s usual made-to-measure approach—perfectly custom to any space but a costly way to manufacture—Salinas is compiled of a few modular pieces, requiring far less energy in manufacturing and in tailoring the design to any one space.

Photography from Boffi, except where noted. 

Above: Urquiola’s finishes allow customers to create several different looks: a monochromatic kitchen, a kitchen made of a single material, or a whimsical collection of many materials, like the one shown here.

Above: Urquiola set out to design a kitchen for small spaces, but in the end her more expansive design was a better fit with the rest of the Boffi catalog.

Above: One or more solid wood “peninsula” slabs available in ash or walnut can be fixed to the countertop or configured to slide in and out. The peninsula functions as an additional workspace, or—with a set of stools—as a dining table. For Urquiola, the wood’s rounded edges give the counters a timeworn look.

Above: The standard apron-front sink is available in natural stone, absolute black granite, and quartzite silver. The kitchen framework is made from black matte tubular steel, with LED lights integrated into the shelving.

Above: To achieve the look of tile countertops without the additional expense of tile installation, Urquiola used large sheets of ceramic or Sicilian lava and designed a geometric pattern of inlaid recycled glass.

Above: Options for cabinet door facings include wood, lacquer, brass, copper, zinc, and more. Countertops can be made of ceramic, marble, lava stone, or recycled PaperStone.

Above: A glimpse of the finishes available for countertops and cabinet fronts.

For more Italian kitchens, see:

N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran April 29, 2015.

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