Spring, summer, early autumn: the hottest periods of the year make you want to spend time outdoors, especially in the evening, when freedom from daily chores and the fresh air pleasantly lead to parties, aperitifs or dinners with loved ones.
The four walls of the house appear narrow, especially in the kitchen, where it is busier and often warmer, due to ovens or stoves. An outdoor kitchen has become a requirement and having one has transformed from a custom to a real key to improving your lifestyle.
A dream outdoor kitchen can replace the entire indoor kitchen, limiting the need to travel in and out of the house to a minimum. Equipment, ingredients, preservation tools must all be on hand, offering maximum practicality.
At the same time, it must be a pleasant environment, and the various components must be able to resist wear and tear, atmospheric agents and the passing of time. This is why it is up to a good designer to carefully choose the luxury outdoor kitchen finishes.
Therefore, the perceptive, visual and tactile aspect of the materials chosen and the elegant style must be combined with the characteristics of robustness and reliability, capable of preserving the aesthetics over time along with the value of the investment.
How to choose luxury outdoor kitchen finishes
When designing a bespoke outdoor kitchen, after deciding where to place it, its dimensions and shape, you’ll have to consider the aesthetic aspect and then choose the right materials for the finishes.
This phase is very delicate, creative and rewarding if approached correctly. Those involved in the project must be able to find the perfect compromise between the tastes and preferences of the client, the stylistic harmony with the rest of the house and also the physical characteristics of the materials, which must remain unchanged over the years, despite atmospheric agents and wear and tear.
Until some time ago, mainly natural materials were used, such as wood or stone, or traditional masonry. These types of finishes have been outdated by more modern solutions, superior from the functional point of view, but also more current in terms of style.
First, you should think about the materials for the worktop. In most cases, large surfaces are preferred, which take advantage of the greater availability of space typical of outdoor environments. The tops need to be very robust since most of the stress and wear and tear will be concentrated here.
High temperatures, fats, aggressive seasonings of all kinds already test traditional tops, but in this case, we must also consider an intense exposure to atmospheric agents. As a result, the top material must bear all this without getting ruined, maintaining its elegance and ease in cleaning.
Concerning style, all the storage units, both those that support it or are contiguous and those positioned independently, such as wall units or wardrobes, will have to match the top.
From the functional point of view, these elements will contain every object or ingredient necessary in the kitchen, as well as acting as a base for foldaway bins and pull-out drawers. Sometimes they are also used to contain built-in appliances.
The finishes for the units must be robust, able to resist the vagaries of the climate, easy to clean and last over time, all while preserving the stylistic harmony with the rest of the outdoor kitchen.
At this point, it is clear that the choice of materials should be made with extreme care, keeping in mind that not all finishes can be used with the same ease. Those who have been dealing with luxury outdoor kitchen finishes for decades, like DFN, know the characteristics of the best materials well. In detail, the ones we suggest using are:
Finishes for luxury outdoor kitchens: porcelain stoneware
Refined, robust, and suitable for contact with food. Porcelain stoneware is one of the best materials available for outdoor kitchens. It is a very durable substance, suitable for contact with food or drinks and easy to clean, therefore optimal for an environment dedicated to food preparation.
In the case of worktops, stoneware is usually used in large slabs, with a thickness of 6 or 12 millimetres, cut to size and therefore devoid of joints or cracks in which dirt can lurk. It is extremely compact, resistant to heat or frost and not subject to corrosion and fading. Furthermore, it is hygienic, does not absorb liquids and resists stains very well.
In addition to functional qualities, porcelain stoneware also has a highly sought after appearance. DFN proposes it in different marble-effect finishes, exquisite, a solution that perfectly simulates the precious mineral without having to face the drawbacks. Marble is porous, very delicate and changes colour over time: a choice not recommended as a luxury outdoor kitchen finish.
Concerning the doors, in particular, those of the Curved line, porcelain stoneware can be applied in an ultra-thin 3 mm version, with a marble finish but also with many other options including the high-impact metallic finish.
Finishes for luxury outdoor kitchens: steel
Stainless steel is one of the most successful materials used in outdoor kitchens, thanks to both its aesthetic qualities and extraordinary performance. It is used for tops and doors and many accessories, above all, the appliances.
The first choice for the realisation of professional kitchens has always been steel because it is particularly suitable for outdoor environments, thanks to its extraordinary resistance to time, corrosion and the most extreme temperatures.
Choosing steel as a finish for a luxury outdoor kitchen means investing in an almost indestructible, hygienic (because it is biologically neutral) and very easy to clean product. Concerning style, moreover, its shiny surface communicates purity and strength, a characteristic that makes it an extremely trendy finish.
To some, however, a kitchen made entirely of stainless steel may seem a bit cold or too close to the industrial style. A good solution, in these cases, is to temper its appearance, combining it with furnishing elements and surfaces of other materials.
Finishes for luxury outdoor kitchens: dekton
A valid alternative to more traditional materials, especially concerning worktops, is dekton, a substance obtained from the artificial compaction of some minerals.
Dekton is becoming luxury outdoor kitchen finish, thanks to its excellent physical characteristics. It is light, fireproof, does not change when subjected to ultraviolet rays, heat and cold, and does not scratch. Moreover, it is completely devoid of porosity: this means that it does not absorb liquids and therefore, any stain can be removed easily.
It is usually supplied in large slabs and can be applied as a top on a single surface, without the need for joints, avoiding cracks, where dirt can infiltrate.
It can be obtained in a wide range of effects and colours, so it adapts easily to any style. The pleasantness of the material, however, is not limited to its visual aspect: the compact and uniform consistency makes it particularly pleasant to the touch.
Finishes for luxury outdoor kitchens: powder-coated galvanised iron
The maximum possible customisation in luxury outdoor kitchen finishes is achieved by choosing to make the unit’s structure in galvanised iron, suitable for outdoor environments, which is then covered with powder paints.
In fact, powder coatings are available in a vast range of colours and effects, enough to satisfy the creativity of any designer. In addition to smooth finishes, metallic effect paints are very trendy, whether pearlescent or embossed, with a rougher texture, captivating to the touch.
Powder coatings have unique features; they are both decorative and functional, which make them suitable for outdoor units. They are robust, resistant to corrosion and atmospheric agents, as well as abrasion and heat.
Finishes for luxury outdoor kitchens: the basics
When the kitchen is not made of masonry but is freely installed, it is necessary to provide a base with feet that lift the structure from the ground, making it easier to manoeuvre and better isolated from the ground.
Even in this case, a good designer will choose the best luxury outdoor kitchen finishes. The most obvious choice is that of stainless steel, a guarantee of elegance and strength and easily adaptable to most styles.
It is possible, however, to consider alternative and equally valuable solutions. For example, DFN offers bases consisting of a metal bridge covered with hand-woven synthetic rattan.
Rattan is a material designed for optimal performance in outdoor environments. Non-toxic and recyclable, it resists temperatures and extreme weather conditions and is not altered by ultraviolet rays. Its appearance, therefore, remains the same over the years, without discolouration.
Furthermore, it is very decorative: the weaving pattern, which can be made in various colours, gives it a rustic yet refined feel.
Create value through the right finishes for luxury outdoor kitchens
According to the American Institute of Architects, outdoor kitchens are among the main housing trends, and this is especially true for the upper end of the market. Everything that home buyers want in an indoor kitchen, they now want in the outdoor versions.
Designers and builders are increasingly committed to fulfilling their clients’ dreams, providing high-quality functional features and aesthetic refinement capable of satisfying the tastes and vanity of any homeowner.
Naturally, the best solution is to design the custom outdoor space by choosing luxury outdoor kitchen finishes, matching them with the style of the rest of the house, thus interpreting the personality and preferences of those who will use the kitchen.
It is an investment that does not limit itself to favouring customer satisfaction and the creative ambitions of those who execute the project but is able, through style, to add value to the property, just like we see with interior design.