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Steamboat Magazine

Thinking Outside The Box in Steamboat Springs

03/21/2015 08:27AM ● By Christina Freeman

Photo by Tim Murphy.

By Suzi Mitchell

When the owner of a 420-square-foot studio apartment walked through her front door, she immediately stepped into a narrow galley kitchen with nowhere to hang a coat or put her muddy boots. For a downtown Steamboat Springs' home, that situation was far from ideal.

Although the living space is small, the studio boasts a full wall of windows with panoramic views of Howelsen Hill. Keeping the kitchen tucked away in such an awkward location was poor planning. It was time to rethink the space.

Bradley Bartels of PureBuilt construction suggested moving the kitchen, turning it into a focal point. “I wanted to streamline the layout so that is was more efficient for everyday living,” Bartels says. The footprint for the new kitchen was 70 square feet, meaning every inch of space had to be used wisely.

Working within a limited budget, the kitchen was sourced from Ikea in Denver. Energy efficient lighting and appliances were bought locally.


Streamlining the look using white gloss cabinets that reflect natural light gives the illusion of space and a modern feel.


A wrap-around wooden countertop on the island adds contrasting color and texture to the space while tying in with the recycled Douglas fir flooring.


The space has an abundance of natural light, which is reflected off the stainless backsplash. Under-cabinet, energy-efficient LED lighting adds a soft ambience.


A compact 19” Kenmore Elite dishwasher was installed close to the sink, within the island. The built-in microwave doubles as an extractor fan above the cooktop. An energy-efficient refrigerator without an icemaker lowers electrical usage.