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- Samar Bolis

Peninsula Kitchen Layout

The kitchen of any home is extremely important and it has transformed from simply just a place to cook and eat to an even more multi-functional space where lots of beautiful memories are created. The structures, designs, and decorative patterns you give your kitchen, mostly determine how much you get from what this space offers. The layout is like the foundation you prepare for your kitchen, it determines the space, storage, work area, and workflow, and fortunately, there are several options to choose from depending on what you want and the architectural structure of your kitchen.

A Peninsula Kitchen is one with a connected kitchen. That is, instead of an island centered in your kitchen, you have a layout that takes the shape of the letter L or a basic U. Although, the shapes may vary and this is dependent on the design and how it is placed.

Styles of Peninsula Kitchen Layout

There are two styles of a peninsula Kitchen layout and these styles are dependent on the way your kitchen is configured. Styles include the;

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  • L-shaped peninsula Kitchen layout
  • U-shaped peninsula Kitchen layout

L-Shaped Peninsula Kitchen Layout

This style is space-efficient. It adds aesthetic value to the home and improves the working condition in the kitchen. The functional Island is an addition found at the center of the kitchen.

The L-Shape increases interaction and space by redirecting workflow in a four-way pattern or direction. 

An L-Shaped peninsula kitchen layout has just a wall of cabinets and a seating area that is formed by the peninsula itself. This style can easily be used as a breakfast bar.

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U-Shaped Peninsula Kitchen Layout

The U shape automatically shortens or limits the distance between different work areas in the kitchen. This style, however, is just right for a kitchen peninsula with dining room sets, extra storage space, and a peninsula with a sink.

These styles birth different types of peninsula Kitchen layouts. These types are majorly determined by purpose or use.

Types of peninsula Kitchen layout

  • Kitchen peninsula with sink: this type of peninsula has a sink fit in it. The peninsula is made the focal point of the kitchen with this design.
  • Kitchen peninsula with worktop and storage space: the storage capacity of any kitchen can be improved with this type of peninsula which has various storage compartments and units like drawers and cabinets.
  • Kitchen peninsula with worktop and bar setting: this type requires the extension of the countertop or the creation of space by removing some cabinets beneath. The extra area serves to create more room for stools giving the peninsula the look of a breakfast bar.
  • Kitchen peninsula with dining table top: this is an awesome alternative for kitchens with small spaces. With this, you can afford to have a tabletop that serves as a dining room.

Advantages of Peninsula Kitchen Layout

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  • Extra space: this is one edge a peninsula layout has over the traditional and standard kitchen island which takes extra space as it is being centered in the kitchen. A peninsula layout has a connected island that protrudes meaning it could be longer or shorter. This space, no matter the size, offers room for more cabinets, seats, and appliances.
  • Appeal: your kitchen gets a contemporary and stylish feel to it with a peninsula kitchen layout and there are several types of designs to choose from.
  • Versatility: this structure is ultimately multi-functional. It can be a breakfast bar, dining table, etc.
  • Demarcation: a peninsula layout could serve as a room divider which indicates a clear separation between the cooking area and other neighboring rooms like the dining room and living room.
  • Suitable for a small-sized kitchen: as mentioned earlier, a peninsula could be longer or shorter which makes it suitable for a kitchen with little or narrow space.
  • Home value: it is typical of most, if not all, home renovations to add to the value of the home and a peninsula kitchen layout does just that.

Disadvantages of a Peninsula Kitchen Layout

  • Traffic jams: a peninsula Kitchen layout is prone to traffic jams, most especially in the areas surrounding the corner cabinets or lower ones. This is a major drawback. The demarcation created a limited entry into the kitchen because only a single space serves as an entrance and exit. However, a proper layout and design could fix flow issues.
  • Inefficiency in large kitchens: just like this layout suits a small kitchen, it is almost of no use in a larger kitchen, especially with specific layout designs. Instead, they tend to interrupt flow unnecessarily. It requires extra work and planning to make a peninsula fit right into a large kitchen.
  • Presence of tight corners: the protrusion out of a corner or wall tends to make the corners of a peninsula tight, resulting in difficult accessibility to cabinets and other storage units. A lot of creativity and critical planning are required to avoid this.
  • Cost of renovation: if you intend on giving your kitchen this structure, be sure you have come to terms with the fact that it would be an expensive project. This is because a fundamental change has to be made concerning how space is distributed in your kitchen. Other expenses would include plumbing, gas, and lighting.

The Basic Designs of Peninsula Kitchen Layout

The essence of various design options is simply to help you adjust the structure to fit your lifestyle, personal preferences, and needs. 

Accommodate lifestyle and needs

One of the major advantages of a kitchen is its versatility. It can accommodate different lifestyles, preferences, and growing families. To create more space for family members, add more stools on the longer side that faces away from the kitchen and an additional one at the protruded end. The types of peninsula Kitchen layout fit for families include the kitchen peninsula with breakfast bar and the kitchen peninsula with dining room set. If what you want is extra storage space, the kitchen peninsula with worktop and storage compartments is suitable. 

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Go with the flow

This design idea requires you to take advantage of the shape and structure of a peninsula kitchen to do something decorative. A peninsula kitchen already acts as a demarcation. You can use a pendant light to enhance the dividing effect as this creates a visual wall between the kitchen and adjoining rooms. 

Also, be sure to adhere to and follow guidelines recommended for peninsula kitchens when constructing one in your home. The minimum passageway between the end of the peninsula and the opposite wall should be four feet. This is to ensure that a wide opening for entry and exit is maintained. 

The imaginary line between the refrigerator, countertop, and sink forms a triangle. Ensure that an unobstructed traffic pattern is maintained in this triangle.

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The space behind bar stools should be at least forty-four inches allowing enough room for pulling out the stool and moving freely. Lastly, the clearance along the peninsula side should measure up to forty-two inches. This measurement ensures the availability of ample space for movement.

Get in the zone

The structure of a peninsula provides room for the expansion of the triangle. The extended space adds to the work zone of the kitchen. The extra room provided allows the people in the kitchen to do different things at different spots. 

Kitchen Peninsula Ideas

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Below are a few ways to entirely transform your peninsula kitchen;

  • A great way to give your peninsula kitchen a rich look is by covering the background, countertops, and peninsula itself with marble. 
  • Use wood for details.
  • Use of vintage lighting.
  • Wood carpentry combined with marble countertops.
  • Use shades of bright white to create uniformity between the peninsula, walls, cabinets, and countertops.
  • Use grey or black paint on the sides and use a neurally colored countertop top to create an industrial look.
  • Add a step-up structure.
  • Use of a waterfall countertop to modernize the peninsula kitchen.
  • Accenting the top of the peninsula with ornamental flowers in transparent glass vases.
  • Use an elevated sheet of tempered glass to create a bar-height surface.
  • Use of carved-out shelves.
  • Use of transparent chairs as bar stools.
  • Use of brightly colored paint in the background to highlight the peninsula.
  • Installation of numerous cabinets.

Guidelines and Tips

Dos

  • Be sure to consult an interior designer before going on with this project. This is important, especially if you only have a fair knowledge of kitchen layouts and designs. This is because if not properly calculated and planned, there would be a lot of traffic jams created that would constantly interrupt the workflow. The essence of hiring an interior designer is to have someone with experience and enough knowledge about these layouts to assist in the planning process.
  • Ensure to create uniformity between your peninsula and the entire theme of your kitchen. There should be a match between the style and theme of your kitchen because the peninsula reflects the design of the kitchen at large. Even with changes in the floors and finishes, the countertops and cabinets should maintain uniformity.
  • While constructing your peninsula, storage space should be a priority. A peninsula kitchen layout has a structure that gives more room for storage and is sure to utilize it.
  • Amongst the various types, your first consideration should be a breakfast bar. The layout of a peninsula kitchen is very suitable for this arrangement. 
  • Lighting can be a problem with a peninsula layout because it is an open space with adjoining rooms and the demarcation created is not enough to create a division, accenting your peninsula kitchen with preferred accent lighting.

Don’ts

  • Don’t consider this project if your kitchen is large enough for a standard island.
  • The kitchen peninsula is just the right place for casual dining, sitting, and cooking. Avoid installing large appliances.
  • Do not add a raised bar section. A breakfast bar setting is a suitable option. Raising a bar section would ruin the versatility of your peninsula and would cause frequent tripping.
  • Do not make your peninsula too big. The peninsula already offers enough space, so no need to use up vital kitchen space.
  • Remember the work triangle? That is the space between the refrigerator, countertop, and sink. Do not disrupt it. These three areas are the crucial parts of any kitchen, so while on your project, be sure that there is a great workflow between these areas.

Peninsula kitchen layout dimensions

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  • Width: A Peninsula should have a width of about twenty-four inches. This is because adequate space is required to walk around, leaving ample room for proper utilization of the kitchen on the inside perimeter.
  • Entryway: the entryway should measure up to thirty-six inches.
  • Kitchen triangle: the rules stay strict. Do not block one element of the triangle from the other. First of all, no leg of the triangle should be less than four feet and no leg should be more than nine feet. Secondly, the sum of all three sides should stay within the range of thirteen feet and twenty-six feet. This dimension applies to all kitchen types and layouts. 
  • Depth: a peninsula of twelve inches to fifteen in-depth is suitable. 
  • Height: standard height is within the range of thirty to forty-two inches. For a bar countertop, you can go as high as forty to forty-two inches. 
  • Overhang: for a comfortable seating area, ten inches to twelve inches for overhang is required. That is about twenty-five centimeters to thirty centimeters. This measurement leaves adequate knee room and the right space between the countertop and seating area or between the countertop and the person seated. 
  • Clearance: to create an ample walkway behind the peninsula, a space of thirty-two inches between the edge of the table or countertop to the wall is recommended.

Peninsula Kitchen Layout Countertop Materials

When it comes to countertops, there are countless options to choose from, and careful consideration of preferences, advantages, and disadvantages would enable you to make the decision that is just right for you and your peninsula kitchen.

Quartz countertops

Quartz is made or engineered with a blend of minerals, resin, and color, and it mimics the textures of marble and granite. Unlike both, it has varieties of colors and is easier to maintain due to its lack of porosity. For countertops, quartz with round edges is recommended.

Advantages/ Pros

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  • Availability of different colors
  • A great alternative for lovers of granite and marble
  • Heat resistant
  • Stain-resistant
  • Scratch-resistant

Disadvantages/ cons

  • Repair of chips can only be done by professionals
  • Scratch resistance is tricky as not all are entirely resistant and these scratches can be difficult to repair.
  • It is resistant to heat but it is not heatproof; it can only handle about 150°F

Granite countertops

This is one of the best options available for homeowners who intend to go full with the modern style. Every slab of granite is unique, and there are hardly any two kinds that are the same. Additionally, granite countertops boast great strength.

Advantages/ Pros

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  • A more natural option than quartz
  • Unique
  • When sealed, it can be resistant to scratches and heat
  • Resistant to stains

Disadvantages/cons

  • It is porous.
  • It is expensive.
  • Sealing is required for resistance to harsh or threatening conditions like heat and scratch.

Marble countertops

This natural stone is also recognized as high-end. The color pattern options are few. For activities like baking, it is considered an almost perfect work surface. 

Advantages/ pros

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  • Has gorgeous natural patterns which give the home an exotic feel.
  • Provides a smooth work surface for certain cooking procedures
  • Gives a classic look to the decor of the kitchen

Disadvantages / cons

  • Highly porous
  • Maintenance is highly relative
  • It is expensive.
  • Requires constant or routine resealing

Limestone countertops

This is a natural material that is highly abundant. It usually has an off-white or white color. Limestone is made from calcium carbonate, and it is mostly applied commercially. It gives the home an elegant and luxurious feel with its rich white tone.

Advantages/ pros

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  • Serves as a trendy option
  • Has distinct texture
  • Has good resistance to heat

Disadvantages/ cons 

  • Has low resistance to stains
  • Has low resistance to scratches and chips
  • Fades or changes color with time

Laminate Countertops

This is gradually becoming more common and popular, particularly in commercial applications. Usually, it has glued plastic layers on the surface and can be installed over already existing laminate material. It has a great percentage of versatility and can be designed or made to look like other high-end options.

Advantages/pros

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  • It is easy to install
  • It is a cheaper option than most other countertops.
  • The patterns and colors are finite
  • Has a good percentage of durability
  • Resistant to heat
  • Resistant to stain

Disadvantages/ cons

  • Has poor resistance to chips and scratches as it can easily be damaged by sharp-edged objects like a knife.
  • Does not improve the value of the property where it is installed.

Wood and butcher block countertops

This is the right go-to option for homeowners who seek to give their homes a natural look and warmth. The tones and textures of wood easily create the desired atmosphere. 

Advantages/ pros

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  • One of the most sought options for homeowners
  • Scratches are easily repaired by sanding
  • Has a fair resistance to heat
  • Varnish can be added to prevent stains
  • Easy to install
  • Can be treated to have resistance to stains.
  • It is easily renewable

Disadvantages/cons

  • The porous surface allows easy condensation and absorption of spilled liquids
  • Maintenance and refinishing are required
  • Not resistant to scratches

Stainless steel countertops

This countertop gives the kitchen a gorgeous, sophisticated, and sleek look. It is mostly used in restaurant kitchens and is barely used in homes. It is not a trendy option but can serve as a good choice still.

Advantages/ pros

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  • Resistant to heat
  • Resistant to moisture
  • Resistant to stain

Disadvantages/ pros

  • It is easily dented.
  • It is not scratch resistant.

Concrete Countertops

This has shared a resemblance to natural stone, and it is a great option for homeowners who intend to opt for a custom countertop. They are often pre-casted, cured, and finished before being delivered to homes. 

Concrete counters are usually about one and a half inches thick, and the slabs are about ten feet in length. Pigments can be added to achieve different color variations. After curing, concrete slabs are protected against stains by the process of honing and sealing. Since concrete can be susceptible to cracks, wire meshes, stainless steel fibers or fiberglass, and metal rebar are used to improve the strength of the concrete.

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Advantages/ pros

  • Available in various colors
  • Resistant to scratches
  • Resistant to heat

Disadvantages/ cons

  • It requires sealing to prevent certain damages.
  • It is expensive

Ceramic Tile countertops

This has long fallen off the trend to give room for more seamless and low-maintenance countertops. This does not erase it as an option as it is also an excellent choice for peninsulas, islands, counters, and backsplashes. Installation is done using plywood of ¾” with a ½” thick cement backer board on top.

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Advantages/ pros 

  • It is very affordable.
  • There are various design patterns to choose from.
  • It is non-porous.

Disadvantages/ cons

  • Requires grout resealing regularly

Soapstone countertops

The availability of color variations for soapstone is limited. Color patterns for soapstone include dark or greenish-black and light shades of green-grey. It is porous and requires sealing with mineral oil to protect against stains.

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Advantages/pros

  • Subtle color patterns fit into the decor of any kitchen
  • Can be treated to protect against stains

Disadvantages/ cons

  • Has high porosity
  • It is not originally stain-resistant.
  • Has a highly relative soft texture
  • Few color patterns or options

Slate countertops

For slate, colors include and are mostly limited to; purple, black, red, gray, and green. Unlike soapstone, it is not soft and porous.

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Advantages/ pros

  • Scratches can easily be repaired with steel wool.

Disadvantages/ cons

  • Limited color options 

Solid Surface countertops

These surfaces are made from dense polyester, acrylic, or a blend of both. They have a wide variety of colors, patterns, and choices. These surfaces have high resistance to scratch and stains, and they are easy to renew and repair. This is a great countertop option for large and long sections as the seams are fused to create joints that are inconspicuous and undetectable.

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Advantages/pros 

  • It is not porous.
  • Scratches and burns are easy to repair by sanding.
  • Various colors are available to choose from.
  • It is easy to maintain.

Disadvantages/ cons

  • It is not resistant to scratches.
  • It is not resistant to heat.

Peninsula kitchen countertop guidelines

The numerous options available for peninsula kitchen countertops might make it difficult to choose a particular one that not only suits preferences and lifestyles but also offers great value. Before you purchase your countertop, here are a few things to look out for;

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  • Material considerations: compared to bathroom counters, kitchen countertops see more wear and tear, and this is why you should consider a countertop that is highly resistant to a lot of damaging factors for your peninsula kitchen. 
  • Warranty: make inquiries about the warranty of the countertop you decide to have for your peninsula.
  • Measurements: you can have the fabricator of your countertop ensure that the measurements are accurate and meet the standards.

Peninsula vs Kitchen island

A peninsula layout has been used in kitchens since the 1970s. During this time, they were very popular and recognized as trendy until the discovery and use of kitchen islands which homeowners were very quick to embrace. However, in more recent years, peninsulas have made bounced back into the trend.

These two are the most popular layouts for kitchens. The striking and distinctive features of both are dependent on the structure. Although both create extra space for storage, several things distinguish one from the other. These differences help you make the right selection for whatever fits your home and the space you have available.

To begin with, it is important to note the key difference; both structures are named according to the features of geography that they align with. An island is a counter that stands freely in the middle of your kitchen as a separate unit with four open sides. On the other hand, a peninsula shares a connection with the wall of the kitchen with an attachment of a single end with the open sides limited to three. The shape of a peninsula makes it considered as a part of the kitchen that was only extended but there’s more. 

An island is originally fit for large kitchens. The requirement for this structure includes a clearance space of at least thirty-six inches on all four sides to move around a workstation with a minimum of forty-two inches and sometimes even more area is required. Peninsulas do not take up or require that much space, and they serve as a great alternative for smaller kitchens while serving just the same purpose. 

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Cost of peninsula kitchen layout

The average cost for a peninsula kitchen layout is about $90 per square foot. Which gives a cost range of about $3,000 to $5,000.

This excludes the cost of labor and installation because you would need professional assistance from an electrician, a carpenter, a painter, and a countertop top installer.

The practicality and competent structure of a peninsula layout has arrested the attention of many homeowners, thus, making it quickly adopted by trend even after already being in existence for so many years. 

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