What was once an eyesore in the kitchen is now a chic centerpiece. The range hood has become an underrated way to add artful elegance—and utility—to your home. “We want to reinvent the kitchen hood, in a sense, and make it cool," says the team at DDG, a design and development firm. "We want to turn it into something that people enjoyed seeing, rather than despised.”
DDG is not alone: A handful of New York City developers have started incorporating statement vent hoods into their projects. We chatted with a few experts to find out more about the trend and get their advice on how to make it work in your home.
Get in on trending metals
Metal home decor is in, and range hoods are not immune to this trend, which goes beyond the classic stainless steel. In the all-white kitchens at 180 East 88th Street (above), DDG installed a layered bronze-clad hood that anchors the room.
The DDG team says, “I think metal is becoming increasingly popular as a hood material, with many designers using stainless steel and brass. Size also seems to be increasing; people are becoming bolder and are open to more oversize, sculptural designs that act as focal points in the room. At DDG, we liked the idea of cladding the hood in bronze as it both looked elegant as well as picked up the finishes of the faucet and door handles.”
Let it serve as a focal point
Every style of kitchen has the potential to make a statement with a range hood—even the most minimalist spaces. The eye is immediately drawn to the striking black and gold hood in this galley kitchen.
“Up until very recently I think the trend was to make the hood more discrete, with designers aiming to make it blend in rather than standout," says DDG. "We’re starting to see that change more and more as kitchens become larger focal points of residences as gathering and social spaces, not just cooking spaces.”
A hood adds real function
Range hoods are a practical way to ventilate your kitchen, eliminating heat, steam, and smoke from the space. It’s important to have clean air in the kitchen, especially now that incorporating kitchen nooks, more expansive bar seating at kitchen islands, and open floor plans are becoming more popular.
Make the hood an architectural element
At the Fitzroy, a new Chelsea building designed in the Art Deco style by Roman and Williams, the custom copper hoods are reflective of the building's facade. "Copper is a living material that will patina over time, just like the building itself, which has a terracotta facade and copper-clad windows," says Michael Stern, CEO of JDS Development, one of the firms (together with Largo) behind the project.
If you have the space, use it
Have high ceilings? Don’t waste the space. Instead of hiding your kitchen hood, use it to create length and drama. DDG suggests a kitchen hood, especially an oversized one, can add a grand element to your space.
Make the kitchen the heart of the home
At 70 Vestry, a new condo building in Tribeca, Related Companies worked with AD100 designer Daniel Romualdez to custom design the kitchens "to be the heart of the home and look more like a family room than a utilitarian kitchen." “Knowing that buyers expect every aspect of new developments to be curated, we carefully deliberated all of the materials," says Ben Joseph, Executive Vice President at Related. "The Bardilgio Imperial marble kitchen hoods are flanked by open brass shelves and full length oak cabinetry providing a warm library-like feel for residents.”
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