Guest Blogger: Gail O’Rourke

June 16, 2014

Organizing your Kitchen for Summer Guests

People who own second homes are fortunate they have a place to escape to on the weekend, relax, and spend time with their families. On Cape Cod, where I live, there are many people who battle the Friday night traffic for the sun, the sea, surf, and some shopping!

They know there is nothing quite like the Cape … and so do all their friends! It seems company visits almost every weekend and second homeowners are always ready to have more join the party. Entertaining or having company, however, means there is work to be done! From planning and meal preparation, to shopping and keeping house having guests can be hard work.

When designing a new home, or remodeling an existing kitchen where regular company is a given, a well thought out plan can make all the difference. In addition to a good work triangle, here is what I consider the “must haves” for a kitchen that never rests!

A big island or plenty of table seating

I love this big island, rustic top and simple stools

Epiphany Design Studio of Nashville, Tennessee

Or this kitchen, with its working island and seating peninsula.

white wood kitchens

Photo courtesy White Wood Kitchens

A Coffee Station

A coffee station or area where “grab and go” breakfast items are easy to find and coffee can be programmed to brew the night before. It is nice when this can be outside of the “work triangle” so it doesn’t interfere with the cook.

Photo courtesy of Dura Supreme

Or, even better is the new single cup brewers by companies such as Keurig or a built-in coffee maker like this one from Wolf.

wolf coffee

Photo courtesy of Wolf appliances

A Charging Area

An out-of-the-way charging station where company can charge their mobile phones so they don’t litter the countertop. To keep your guests sane and avoid a middle-of-the-night road trip to the Apple Store, consider keeping a few extra chargers around to give your high performing guests peace of mind.

phone charging station

Photo courtesy Dura Supreme Cabinetry

Organized Recycling Center

A double trash pull-out and double recycling pull-out are must haves! This is an easy way to corral all the bottles and cans that stack up when you have a house full of guests and makes it easy to organize your recycling.


Photo courtesy White Wood Kitchens

All of these things, combined with family, friends, good food, and a sense of humor will ensure that you summer is fun for you and your company.


Gail O’Rourke is president and owner of White Wood Kitchens in Sandwich Massachusetts.A custom cabinetmaker and finish carpenter Gail has over ten years of custom design and construction experience.  For more information visit the White Wood Kitchen website. 


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