Your New Dream Kitchen Might Straddle the Line Between Indoors & Out

updated Jun 26, 2019
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(Image credit: The Beetle Shack)

Having an outdoor kitchen is nice, but, in my opinion, what’s even more nice is having a kitchen that morphs into an outdoor kitchen whenever you desire. From awning windows to disappearing walls, there are plenty of ways to open up your kitchen to the out-of-doors — here are some of my favorites.

Above: In a home from The Beetle Shack, a set of bifold doors turns an outdoor balcony into an extension of the kitchen.

(Image credit: Inside Out)

For a wide window opening, you can use a bifold window, like the one in this South African home from Inside Out. Bifold windows are more expensive, but they also present more possibilities, since they can cover larger areas. Adding a bar beneath the window provides a spot for guests to engage with cooks who are working indoors.

(Image credit: Melton Design Build)

Here’s the opposite perspective, from the inside looking out, from a kitchen from Melton Design Build. Even if you’re not entertaining, you could open a bifold window like this one to get the feeling of cooking outside.

(Image credit: Benn + Penna)
(Image credit: Benn + Penna)

In this indoor/outdoor kitchen from Benn + Penna, a continuous run of cabinets means that, with the folding doors open, the transition between inside and and outside is almost seamless.

(Image credit: The Style Files)
(Image credit: The Style Files)

This holiday home on St. Barths, spotted on The Style Files, has a kitchen that opens up to the deck outside. I’m not quite clear on the mechanism, but it looks like some kind of retractable overhead door.

This kitchen, from Metropolitan Construction, has the most ambitious setup of all — a pivoting door, paired with a retractable pocket door, paired with a bifold door. The budget for this sort of thing, I’m guessing, is quite steep, but if you luck into some riches you can create a house where, when the weather is nice enough, the walls literally disappear and your whole home becomes your backyard. We’d love an invite.