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A cramped ’80s galley kitchen with worn white melamine cabinets and dated white appliances made way for this warm, contemporary open kitchen by architect Barron Schimberg. Schimberg opened up the wall to the dining area to provide more user-friendly flexible space. He added the marble-topped island for additional seating and a prep station, and complemented the marble with a marble-and-glass subway tile backsplash. Clever monorail light fixtures with LED lights were stretched across the high-volume ceiling to augment three stainless-steel hanging pendant lights. The new white cabinets reflect the lovely periwinkle shade of blue that replaced the original “ugly yellow” walls. Schimberg says he’s getting a lot of comments about the color on his Houzz page.

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This sleek, contemporary kitchen, part of the renovation of a 1990s-era apartment in Grand Bay on Longboat Key, was a collaboration between Tracy Scalzo of Eurotech Cabinetry and architect William Dobson. High-gloss lacquer pantry cabinets in taupe complement drawers made of olive-wood laminate with a strong horizontal grain. Minimalistic LED lights were installed in the kitchen ceiling and electrical outlets were tucked out-of-sight into the sink side of the island. And speaking of that sink, it was originally on the wall where the cooktop now sits. In order to move it to the spacious new Caesarstone-topped island, contractor Gregg Kaplan of LBK Contractors and Design brought the plumbing up through the ceiling and installed an elaborate pump system in the island. Now the homeowners can work at the sink and interact with their guests at the same time. “I couldn’t believe they did it, but they did,” says Eurotech’s David Asher.

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Ryan Perrone of Nautilus Home blended casual and sophisticated elements in this Dutch West Indies-inspired kitchen in Siesta Key’s Spice Bay. At 16 by 18 feet, the kitchen lives large thanks to its 11-plus-foot ceiling and open concept floor plan. (This photograph doesn’t show the informal breakfast area on the left that opens onto an outdoor covered terrace with fireplace, and the bar to the right of the staircase portal that opens up to the living room.) Perrone chose walnut wood floors, hand-scraped to achieve a casual feel. “We’re on Siesta Key; you don’t want a perfect wood floor,” he says. The builder maximized the smallish space with more high-end finishes—look closely and you’ll see that the staircase portal is made of raised-panel cabinetry, for example. “It makes it feel like you’re walking into something special,” says Perrone. And the natural stone backsplash has an unusual groutless weave to add more texture and dimension.

For this week's collection of iShots, Robert Castro's sharing photos of one of his favorite daily visitors to his home: a bird named Bird.

All photographs by Robert Castro, enhanced with Instagram.

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