Monday, July 19, 2010

Menthon Saint-Bernard kitchen

Are there elements that make interior spaces, such as kitchens, uniquely French? In my experience, kitchens in France seem as varied as American kitchens; there are small kitchens in Paris and large kitchens in Provence. As in the US, I think French kitchen design is probably dictated by space, taste, and budget.

This kitchen is in a 1901 limestone guest house where we stayed during the summer of 2005. The house is on the grounds of Palace de Menthon in Menthon Saint-Bernard, one of the small villages that circle Lac d'Annecy in Annecy, France. You can click on the pic for a larger view.

This kitchen, located in the rear of the house, doesn't receive a lot of natural light. But the design choices go a long way to addressing that problem: light colored, highly reflective countertops and wall tile do a wonderful job of reflecting light from the oversized light fixtures and undercounter lights, as did the gleaming dark wood and polished metal fixutres. What I loved about this kitchen was the how cool the temperature was, and yet it never felt "cold" because of the all the wood.

Is there anything that makes this kitchen particularly French? Perhaps the smaller appliances--cooktop, in-wall oven, narrow refrigerator--and the lack of a dishwasher?

What do you think?

Next post: Rue du vy élevé kitchen


  1. I've never noticed that type of tile in an American kitchen before (or of a bathroom style I think) or the gold bar off the counter top.

  2. I think small kitchens can work if they are styled to be efficient. With the bars for hanging towels off of, and the little table so you're not sitting groceries on the counter, it works.