If you own a beach house, you want to spend your time enjoying it, not cleaning and maintaining it all the time. You also want it to be pleasing to look at and inviting to everyone who comes there (beach homes tend to attract a lot of company). Read on to learn five tips to make your beach house kitchen, probably the busiest room in the house, easy to use, hospitable, and beautiful.
Echo But Don't Compete with Your Natural Surroundings
If you live on the beach, you don't want your home to overshadow the natural splendor that makes your location so special. There are some decor tricks to letting your home complement the environment rather than compete with it.
First, keep your palette soft and neutral, using paint tones in white, cream, beige, or washed pastels. This allows the eye to continue looking past your walls and to the vista beyond. It also makes it easy to spot fingerprints and grime, so you can wipe them up with your daily cleaning. (Use semi-gloss or gloss paint finishes to facilitate this.)
Second, take elements from nature outdoors and bring them in to blend the two worlds more seamlessly. A great way to do this is to embed interesting beach materials into your kitchen countertops. You can add shells or rocks to a concrete counter or purchase recycled glass countertops that look like they are made of naturally tumbled beach glass. Take those hues, such as aquamarine, and echo them in your accessories like serving dishes, linens, and cushions.
Use Elements from Nature
In utilizing elements from nature, perhaps none is more appropriate for a beach house than natural wood. Wood, when treated with stain, pickling, or marine laminate, weathers the elements perfectly and is super easy for you to maintain. Give consideration to using wood in your ceilings, floors (no grout to clean!), and backsplash. You can use peel-and-stick wood flooring for a simple DIY backsplash if you have none.
Wood, when protected properly, also makes an ideal beach house countertop surface. A huge slab of knotty wood makes a stunning island or bar top that can be a focal point for your room without detracting from your view.
Make Serving Easy
Shared counter surfaces between rooms make beachside living easier. Having a bar between the kitchen and living/dining areas makes serving kids' snacks a breeze and offers a place for buffet-style meals or adult entertaining.
If you are remodeling your beach home and can't take down an entire wall, think about creating a pass-through between the kitchen and dining room or between the indoors and the patio or porch. Just like the rest of your kitchen, you want your pass-through counter surface to be easy to wipe down and damage resistant. Solid surface counters fare well here, as would something fun like a laminated wooden surfboard.
Keep Nautical Elements Subtle and Sophisticated
If you're going to use surf and sand motifs in your home, try to keep them on the sophisticated side, so the house doesn't become too kitschy. Ship lantern pendant lighting and wall sconces are one way to add marine flavor to the kitchen. You can also use rope elements, sea grass rugs, and high-quality artwork to give a subtle nautical feel to your kitchen.
Don't Forget About Small Elements with Big Impact
When designing your beach house kitchen, don't neglect those little elements that you can use every day to make life there more comfortable. A ceiling fan in the kitchen and/or dining area can be a lifesaver when there's no wind. A dinner bell at the window lets you call the kids in from the beach for meals, and a footwash station at the back door keeps sand to a minimum.
You can take many of these tips and carry them into any bathrooms adjoining your kitchen too. Designing and decorating your beach house kitchen can be fun and make your life at the beach simpler and more pleasurable when you take the time to do it right.