I am one of the 10 million plus moms who just finished the trilogy “Fifty Shades of Grey,” by E. L. James. I’m not much of a fiction reader but I do get sucked into the frenzied mad dash for the over-the-top best sellers. No doubt, there was quite a lot of detail about the relationship between the main characters Ana Steele and Christian Grey, but I found there was very little detail of the other main characters in the books: the Escala Penthouse kitchen and the kitchen in the Mansion they renovated on the coast. So I took the liberty to do a little digging.
First of all, Escala really does exist. There are many blogs written about the Escala Penthouse but I particularly liked Mail OnLine featuring many pictures, including one with the Penthouse kitchen and floor plans. I’m sure you can imagine the real Escala management is overwhelmed with “Fifty Shades of Grey” fans.
Let’s pretend that Christian was in on the “ground floor” construction of this building and everything was custom designed for him by the very sexy and talented female architect Gia–an ex-girlfriend of Christrian’s brother Elliot who ignited jealous rage in Ana. So what did this kitchen look like? I think the cabinets and design of Christian’s kitchen were similar to the picture above because we know a breakfast bar was the focal point of many scenes. I also love the high gloss Pedini Cabinets with white granite countertops and the pendent lights that look like stars.
Let’s talk about appliances because that is my specialty! The real Escala Penthouse kitchen, shown in the picture above, has dated discontinued Gaggenau appliances. No Gaggenau for Christian! I think Gia would have picked Miele Appliances. Miele’s pursuit of excellence and commitment to uncompromising quality is exactly what Christian practices. So from left to right, set in the cabinets, is the Miele integrated 30” all freezer and the 30” all refrigerator, 30“ double ovens with a 30” integrated warming drawer under the ovens. Let’s not forget a high speed built-in microwave. Christian didn’t cook but he knew how to use a microwave. Remember, Ana was blindfolded! And since he works crazy hours and keeps Ana up late at night, he would also need an espresso coffee maker that is plumbed to a filtered water line, filled with illy coffee beans, and included a warming drawer for coffee cups. To make up for Christian’s lack of culinary skills, he has Mrs. Jones to take care of him. As the head housekeeper/chef, Mrs. Jones loves the 36″ induction cooktop with its precise temperature capabilities and ease to keep clean. Hidden behind the breakfast bar is a Sub-Zero Undercounter Wine Cooler. But the real fashion statement in the kitchen is the sexy island hood. What a kitchen! Only the best for Christian!
What about the kitchen in the fabulous McMansion on the coast that Christian buys as a surprise for Ana in Fifty Shades Darker? There was actually no mention of the kitchen so I’m going to keep daydreaming. For inspiration I went to www.houzz.com, the largest collection of interior design and decorating ideas on the internet including kitchens. I found it ironic that when Houzz was featured on the front page of the Home & Garden section of the NY Times on March 21, 2012, Steve Kurutz wrote “Houzz has become one of the largest resources of house porn anywhere.” House porn meets mommy porn. Nice….
Of course I found a kitchen in Houzz that would be perfect for the Grey family: crisp white painted cabinets with a hint of glass, dark floors, a beautiful tile back splash all open to the family room. Perfect for young children. I can just picture it: Ana (have you picked an actress to play her) at the kitchen sink, with the afternoon sun coming through the windows, watching Christian and their son playing in the backyard that over looks the coast. I can not wait for the movie. Can you?
Martha O’Hara Interiors from Minnessota designed this beautiful Kitchen. Other credits go to the Builder: Charles Cudd de Novo, Photographer Troy Thies and Photo Styling Shannon Gale. I am sure Ana would have been happy with a 48” Dual Fuel Wolf Range shown in the picture but Christian would have selected a La Cornue Chateau Palais 180 range. Why? Because he can. The custom-built Chateau range will be the ultimate expression for his love of Ana when it comes to cooking. When we are first introduced to Ana we discover she loves to cook and is very good at it. The Chateau will be in stainless and meticulously handcrafted to Christians specifications because he loves to be in control of everything!
All the other appliances will be integrated. Christian and Ana loved their appliances in the Penthouse so they selected the Miele integrated 36” refrigerator and freezer, 18″ tall wine refrigerator, 2 dishwashers, 2 integrated warming drawers, rangehood insert , and in the island the speed microwave oven. There is also a place for the espresso coffee maker and warming drawer for the coffee cups for those late nights.
All the work is done for Universal Pictures’ set designers. Now they can concentrate on the Red Room of Pain….