A Karori home renovation: Kitchen | Refresh Renovations New Zealand
Bathroom Renovation Project

A Karori home renovation: Kitchen

Refresh helped homeowner Cate to achieve an open plan kitchen.

  • Country: New Zealand
  • Location: Wellington
  • Date: 23 September 2019

WORDS Mina Phillips

Location: Karori

Project: Full house renovation

Cost:  $213,575

Duration: 4 months

Renovation specialist: Mark Morrison


Approaching a renovation for the first time can be an exciting but daunting process. First-time renovator Cate felt it was time to update and improve her Karori home. Looking for a team who could help her with every stage of the renovation, she contacted Refresh Renovations and, shortly after, started talking through her ideas with renovation specialist Mark Morrison and his team.

One area of focus within the renovation was combining the kitchen and dining room, which were originally separated by a wall - leaving the kitchen isolated from the rest of the house. Cate had a strong idea of how she wanted her new space to look, and Refresh helped her in putting some of the more technical details together.

“Cate liked black”, says Mark, of the style approach for the new design. “She had a mood board to help with selections and had been planning it for several years.” 

Working with a team that provided end-to-end project management helped Cate to keep her project on track.

“We had a hiccup with an original kitchen supplier”, explains Cate. “Mark and his team were able to find me another one that they’d worked with on other jobs. It was great having a team if I had questions. They didn’t think any of my questions were weird or anything like that, so it was really reassuring.”

The new kitchen design included a minor extension, wall removal, beam installation and overall makeover. 

“The existing kitchen/dining space was opened up and made larger”, adds Mark. “We deleted a wall, installed a steel beam, and closed in a porch.”

Of course, the best way to approach any renovation is to expect the unexpected, so when a few minor issues became apparent, Mark was quick to address them and provide efficient solutions. 

“There were a couple of unexpected things crop up during the build, mostly to do with a subfloor/foundation that was inadequately constructed and needed repair”, he says. “Also, there was some additional electrical work.”

With the wall removed and the space increased, the kitchen received a modern makeover. An open-plan design was prioritised - Cate can now easily flow between the kitchen, dining room and outdoor area. Recessed lighting was installed and plenty of storage was included in the updated design. The colour scheme was updated and plenty of natural light filters into the area through the doors and windows. Keeping with current trends, a practical and aesthetic stone benchtop was installed. 

“It created a great space”, notes Mark. “There is good indoor/outdoor flow and a laundry that hides away behind a big slider.”

“It’s really good”, confirms Cate. “We had Christmas in the new kitchen/dining room - it was so cool! The biggest change is definitely the kitchen/dining area!”

To see how the Refresh team helped Cate to transform her bathroom and guest bedrooms, check out part 2 of this project.


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