Luxurious Larders with a Living Room Look – How Designers are Redefining Kitchen Storage

Kitchens have come a long way from being purely functional spaces focused on food preparation and storage. Today’s kitchen designs integrate luxury, comfort, and aesthetics, transforming the space into a multi-purpose living and entertainment hub. One aspect that designers are reinventing is kitchen storage, with innovative larders and pantries taking center stage.

The Shift from Plain Storage to Luxurious Larders

In the past, kitchen storage was purely utilitarian with plain cupboards and basic shelving units tucked away out of sight. The primary concern was having sufficient space to store cookware, appliances, pantry items and some extra provisions. Little thought went into the aesthetics or visual appeal of storage solutions.

This approach is now changing dramatically as home owners seek storage that is as stylish as it is functional. The sterile pantry cupboard has been replaced with the “larder” – an integrated storage solution that doubles up as an interior design feature.

Larders are characterized by:

  • Attractive custom cabinetry with quality finishes in a range of materials from timber to glass.
  • Open or glass-fronted shelving to display prized crockery & glassware.
  • Clever integration of lighting, bench space and additional storage niches.
  • Zoning for different food groups from ambient goods to wines.

The overall result is storage that looks luxurious, like an upscale furniture installation rather than a basic utility.

Key Design Elements Creating the Luxurious Look

Several design elements come together to create the luxurious, living room aesthetic in modern larders:

Premium Materials and Textures

Larders feature premium construction with customized cabinetry. Materials include wood, glass, marble, granite, metal and stone finishes. Textures like stone surfaces, timber grain and sleek glass lend a tactile, high-end look. Open shelving allows materials to take center stage.

Ambient Lighting

Lighting is used aesthetically to illuminate and showcase the space and its contents. LED strip lighting, spot downlights and ceiling pendants create display-style illumination. Lighting can be zoned and dimmed to set different moods.

Maximalist Styling

Larders are styled like art installations with beautiful crockery, glassware and pantry items prominently displayed. Organization is clean and symmetric with items stacked and placed for visual harmony. The overall look is abundant and luxe.

Integrated Multi-functional Areas

Larders incorporate prep zones, bench space, sinks, coffee stations, wine storage and appliance garages seamlessly into the storage footprint. This enables activities beyond just retrieving food items.

Connection to Living Spaces

Open-plan living has led to closer integration of kitchens and living rooms. Many larders visually connect to lounges through large glass doors or open archways. The continuity in finish allows the larder to feel like an extension of the living space.

Key Benefits of Luxurious Larders

The luxurious larder trend is transforming kitchen storage in several beneficial ways:

Enhanced Aesthetics

The biggest benefit is enhanced visual appeal, changing the perception of kitchen storage from a concealed necessity to an integrated design feature. The larder also upgrades the overall look of the kitchen.

Added Multi-functionality

With prepping zones, sink, coffee bar and desk space incorporated, the larder takes on a versatile, multi-purpose role.

Improved Organization

Purposeful organization with specialized zones and clever configurations means items are easier to find and maintain.

Entertaining Support

Stylish glass-fronted storage for crockery makes it convenient to access and display pieces for entertaining guests.

Promotes Mindful Consumption

The visibility of food items means you can clearly see existing provisions and make more mindful consumption choices.

Extends Living Space

Seamless open-plan flow between larder and lounge areas extends the perceived living space.

Key Design Elements of a Luxurious Larder

Creating a luxurious larder requires careful planning and high-quality finishes. Key elements include:

Spacious Footprint

Allocate ample space for an expansive storage footprint. This allows a flexible layout with specialized storage zones and moving areas.

High-End Construction

Use quality materials like solid timber, marble, granite or premium finishes for cabinetry, countertops and shelving. Glass door cabinetry will add lightness and visibility.

Statement Lighting Features

Include ambient lighting like LED strips and hanging pendants to illuminate and showcase the space and contents.

Multi-Zone Organization

Divide storage into different functional zones like ambient goods, refrigerated items, appliances, glassware etc.

Integrated Additional Features

Incorporate prep bench, sink, sitting space, appliance garage or coffee making zone to enhance functionality.

Seamless Open-Plan Flow

Use consistent finishes and open access between kitchen, dining and lounge areas for a seamless open-plan flow.

Styled Displays

Display glassware collections, crockery and pantry products through symmetrically stacked open shelves or glass-fronted cabinets.

Expert Tips for Creating Luxurious Larders

Interior designers who have mastered the art of crafting luxury larders share their top tips:

  • Allow ample space: Don’t squeeze the larder into a tight footprint. Allow space for different activity zones.
  • Make it a display: Use glass-fronted cabinets, open shelves and clever lighting to showcase beautiful crockery and glassware.
  • Incorporate seating: A built-in banquette, benchtop or coffee bar encourages lingering in the space.
  • Add special details: Include features like a built-in coffee station, wine fridge or bar cart for added interest.
  • Extend living space flows: Use open entryways and consistent finishes to connect the larder visually and physically with living zones.
  • Use lighting strategically: Lighting should highlight displays and create an ambient glow throughout the space.
  • Keep the finish luxurious: Even simple materials like wood or marble take on luxury when finished and installed seamlessly.
  • Enhance textures: Add visual interest through a mix of gloss and matte surfaces, smooth glass and coarse timber textures.
  • Curate symmetrically: Neatly stack and arrange crockery/pantry items in symmetrical piles for a curated look.
  • Divide into specialty zones: Allocate separate areas for ambient goods, refrigerated items, appliances etc for intuitive organization.

Inspirational Real-World Examples of Luxurious Larders

Here are some inspirational examples of luxuriously designed larders from high-end homes:

1. Glass-Fronted Larder with LED Lighting

This luxurious larder uses full-height glass-fronted cabinets to create a light and airy display area. The glass cabinets are illuminated with integrated LED lighting that highlights the beautiful tableware. The stone granite countertop and solid timber eat-in island create an extension of the living space.

2. Walk-In Larder with Prep Zone

This spacious walk-in larder is zoned into display shelving, enclosed storage, and an integrated food prep bench. The caesarstone prep zone allows cooking activities to flow seamlessly from larder to kitchen. Glass-fronted cabinets house crockery collections displayed like artworks.

3. Rustic Industrial Larder

Exposed brick walls, timber cabinetry and black steel accents give this larder an urban industrial feel. Iron mesh doors, matte black hardware and track lighting enhance the look. The brick wall connects seamlessly to the living area.

4. Ladder Display Larder

This narrow larder maximizes display with a salvaged timber ladder fitted with rods to hang cooking utensils. The stone floor matches the kitchen while open shelves provide easy access to daily cooking ingredients.

5. Contemporary Glass Larder

Floor-to-ceiling glass doors make this contemporary larder an extension of the lounge area. The glass larder features a sleek marble island, muted palette and sculptural pendant lighting over a long dining table for a fluid open-plan flow.

Larder Design Tips for Different Home Types

The luxurious larder trend can be adapted to suit different home architectural styles:

For Modern Homes:

  • Incorporate handle-less or brushed metal finishes
  • LED lighting strips and spotlights work well
  • Mix luxurious marble with modern laminates
  • Link to living zones through open-plan floorplans

For Cottages & Country Homes:

  • Unlacquered brass hardware adds warmth
  • Natural timber finishes connect to outdoors
  • Glass-fronted cabinets softly reflect light
  • Red brick larder walls complement country kitchens

For Urban Apartments:

  • Take a minimalist approach to materials and styling
  • Multifunctional islands save space
  • Direct larder access from lounge zones
  • Make displays visible from living areas

For Eclectic Homes:

  • Combine a mix of modern, retro and antique furnishings
  • Contrast sleek cabinets with rough exposed brick walls
  • Mix faded Persian rugs with stone floors
  • Add a splash of color with a vibrant accent wall

5 FAQs About Designing Luxurious Larders

1. How much space do you need for a luxury larder?

Ideally 8-12 square meters will give ample room for storage, prep zones, seating and display areas. However luxury larders can still be designed in more compact footprints of 6 square meters.

2. Should the larder have open or closed storage?

A mix of both open and closed storage works best. Glass-fronted cabinets neatly display crockery collections while drawers and cabinets allow clutter-free storage out of sight.

3. What luxury materials work best in larders?

Premium finishes like timber, marble, granite, stone and glass lend a luxurious look. Open shelving showcases fine materials. Avoid plastic laminates.

4. Should larders connect directly to living spaces?

Yes, visually and physically connecting the larder improves flow and extends the living space. Use open entryways, consistent finishes and matching decor style.

5. Is specialized lighting needed in larders?

Yes, a mix of ambient, display and task lighting creates the right effect. LED strips, spotlights and pendant fixtures showcase the space and contents.


The larder has been transformed from humble pantry to a luxurious living space that blends storage functionality with upscale materials, aesthetic displays and ambient lighting.

Clever kitchen designers are capitalizing on the open-plan living trend to remove utilitarian pantry cupboards and replace them with custom-designed larders. Paired with a living room aesthetic of quality textures, symmetrical organization and integrated multi-functional areas, the modern larder seamlessly bridges kitchen storage and living space.

Homeowners looking to install a high-end kitchen larder should focus on allocating generous space, using quality finishes, connecting the larder aesthetically to adjacent living zones and incorporating display-style storage and lighting. The resulting solution will elevate a necessary storage space into an interior design asset that promotes mindful consumption and facilitates gracious everyday living.