They are the families who are prepared to part with eye-watering sums of money for their dream kitchen.
From £75,000 hand-painted cabinets made of oak to copper pots and pans priced at £350 each, these home-owners have gone to extreme lengths to bring the ‘wow factor’ to their cooking areas – and insist it was all worth it.
Businesswoman Becky Humphreys-Elvis and her husband, from South East London, spent £1,000 on a hot water tap while property developer Mike Robins bought a ton of granite to help create a ‘statement room’ in his Georgian villa in Scotland.
Amanda Jenner and her husband Darren, from Poole in Dorset, paid for leather handles for their kitchen units and spent £10,000 on a wine fridge which was built using Nasa technology.
In total they spent nearly £170,000 on their kitchen. According to property investment specialist London Central Portfolio, the average property value – recorded by monthly Land Registry figures – stands at £177,299.
Here, the families describe how they spent their cash:
Businesswoman Becky Humphreys-Elvis, 44, husband Andy, 43, and daughters Ophelia, nine, and Cicely, six, live in a four-bedroom house in South-East London.
Becky says: When we bought our Victorian house 11 years ago we couldn’t afford to do up the kitchen, so we had to make do with the previous owner’s tatty Ikea cupboards.
The whole space was very poorly designed with a leaking conservatory attached and no room for a dishwasher or tumble dryer. Even the washing machine didn’t fit properly and stuck out into the room.
I hated spending time in it. But I believe the kitchen is the heart of the home. I work in Central London and used to walk past the offices of Charlie Kingham, the bespoke kitchen cabinet maker, and think to myself ‘one day’.
Then, last year, we decided to push the boat out. The girls were settled in a lovely independent school and we didn’t want to move, so decided to make our house work for us.
Charlie Kingham designed us a traditional Shaker-style kitchen, with sliding roof panels to keep the area well ventilated and remove cooking smells, a wood-burning stove, and a separate utility room.
The biggest expense were the cabinets, but they look timeless, are hand-painted and are solid oak.
Our oven is from Rangemaster, the world’s oldest cooker manufacturer, with a five-ring gas hob and double oven underneath.
It has a special shelf for making pizzas and you can even set the timer to bake cakes while you are out. The worktops are Carrara marble imported from Italy and hand-crafted by stonemasons in the UK. They are a lovely pale grey, like in an old-fashioned scullery, and the units are painted in Farrow & Ball Elephant’s Breath while the benches are in Charleston Gray, also by Farrow & Ball.
I have a tap that gives me instant hot water which, although it cost £1,000, is a good investment because it means you never have to boil a kettle again.
Businesswoman Becky Humphreys-Elvis (pictured with husband Andy, said she decided to ‘push the boat out’ after repeatedly walking past the show room of a bespoke cabinet maker in Central London on her way to and from work
And we love our wine fridge, which has sections for white wine, red wine and beer to make sure they are the right temperature. It frees up space in our normal fridge for food and means that whenever we fancy a glass of white wine there is always some chilled.
But my pride and joy is my set of five pans by Mauviel. They cost around £1,500, but they are made of real copper and will last for years. All the top chefs use them.
On other items we were quite careful because we were running out of money, so our washing machine and tumble dryer are cheap-and-cheerful Hoovers.
Six figures sounds a lot to spend on a kitchen but it could have easily been even more. At first we wanted underfloor heating but found that the kitchen was really warm anyway with a wood-burner and big radiator.
We intend to have this kitchen for decades. In fact, I love it so much, I get up at 5.30am just so I can spend a precious half hour in here by myself. My favourite part of the day is when I pour a cup of coffee from our Magimix machine and sit on my own admiring my beautiful room
The granite weighed a ton and took TEN men to carry it
Mike Robins, 46, a property developer, wife Lilian, 47, a full-time mum, and children Daniel, 13, Charlie, 11, and seven-year-old Freya (pictured) live in a £1.5 million six-bedroom Georgian villa in Scotland.
Mike says: I knew what we were getting into when we planned our dream kitchen — it would have been naive to think we could do it for less than six figures.
We set out to create a ‘statement room’, so we employed bespoke kitchen company Sculleries of Stockbridge.
It’s all about detail. The floor-to-ceiling bespoke units are solid walnut with recessed metal hinges, unlike the usual protruding metal brackets you see.
The dark wood is in keeping with our 200-year-old home. The island is made from the same walnut, and we have a dining table and chairs in walnut and leather.
Our windowsills are made from the same granite as the island top. We went to choose the granite from suppliers. It’s so heavy — it literally weighs a ton — that it took ten delivery men to carry it in. The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball Bone.
Mike Robins, pictured with his daughter Freya, seven, set out to create a ‘statement room’ and employed bespoke kitchen company Sculleries of Stockbridge to help make the dream become reality
The Gaggenau hob, which looks like a giant iPad, is an induction plate — the first of its kind in Britain. You can place any number of pans on it and set individual temperatures beneath them.
Our pride and joy is the £2,700 Gaggenau coffee machine. The steam oven has also transformed how we prepare vegetables — they come out crisp and fresh. And the hot water tap, which at 98c is enough to make a cup of tea without boiling a kettle, has the wow factor for guests.
We created a laundry room at a cost of £18,000. As we wanted our dalmatian to be relaxed, too, we made him a bed inside a cabinet in there, which he loves.
I appreciate we’ve spent what must seem like a lot of money. But if you’re looking at a £1 million house, you expect the kitchen to go with it. Hopefully, if we ever sell, buyers will love it as much as we do.
Leather handles for the units and a £10,000 wine fridge
Amanda Jenner, 40, inventor of the My Carry Potty, husband Darren, 44, a kitchen designer, and their children, George, 18, Hollie, 16, and Olivia, seven, live in a six-bedroom £1 million detached house in Poole, Dorset.
Amanda says: I don’t think anyone has ever walked into our kitchen without saying “Wow!”. When we moved in six years ago the kitchen hadn’t been changed for 20 years. It had pine units, orange tiles and a terracotta floor. We couldn’t live with that so Darren put a new £50,000 one in.
But I’d always wanted Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances. They’re the Rolls-Royce of appliances: Sharon Osbourne has them, as do Gordon Ramsay and the Kardashians.
Amanda Jenner, pictured with husband Darren, spent £10,000 on her ‘pride and joy’ – a Sub-Zero wine fridge built using Nasa technology
Darren told me: ‘You’ll need one special kitchen with those appliances’ and got to work. I couldn’t have been more excited if he’d presented me with diamonds.
We’ve got two built-in Wolf ovens at almost £5,000 each. Their interiors are huge and they even clean themselves. I can leave a joint of beef slow-cooking for 24 hours and it doesn’t lose any moisture. There’s a proving area for dough and a dehydrate function so I can make vegetable crisps.
Our Sub-Zero fridge and freezer were almost £10,000 each, but I think they save me money long-term. They’re built using Nasa technology and the cheese drawer is kept at a slightly different temperature than those for fish, meat or veg. It’s rare I have to throw anything away.
My £10,000 Sub-Zero wine fridge is my pride and joy. It keeps white chilled to 4c on one side and red at 18c on the other.
The flooring is high-gloss Italian tile and the solid-wood cabinets have handmade grey leather handles. It cost £2,000 for 28. There are also silk panels at the front of our island that visitors can’t resist stroking.
I couldn’t live without our Miele coffee maker, which cost £2,200. We have a £3,000 tap that gives filtered still or sparkling water. It’s the most fabulous kitchen I’ve ever seen so, to me, it’s worth every penny.
Credit to dailymail uk