In the typical kitchen, when you walk in you see the stove, microwave, dishwasher, and the refrigerator. The fridge can display children’s artwork, your extensive magnet collection, or even your shopping or to-do list. One trend seen in kitchen design is to have a hidden refrigerator. What this means is that instead of having a refrigerator stand out in the kitchen area, it can be built to look flush with and visually the same as your cabinets. To the casual observer, they will not be able to tell which area your refrigerator is in. What are some reasons you might want to do this, and what are some options for making this happen?
If you have your refrigerator (and possibly other appliances) all in line with or flush with the cabinetry, then you can create a clean line in your kitchen. The room will have a unified look to it. Using paneling, your appliances can have a built-in look to them. These can be used with almost every type and style of refrigerator. You would just need to understand the space requirements and any electrical concerns. The hidden refrigerator can also be a full-sized refrigerator (along a wall) or you can have a beverage refrigerator (in an island). You will need to make sure that where you would like to place it will be a large enough area so that you can freely open the doors or pull out the drawers. You can imagine your big food items (Thanksgiving turkey) when trying to determine how much door swing or drawer opening space you will need.
Another area to look into when considering your refrigerator is to see if there is space that can be repurposed. One such space would be a room that is not being utilized or would just make a better refrigerator space. Other spaces could be decorative columns, kitchen closets, or as stated above the kitchen island. Understanding your traffic patterns and usage for the kitchen and refrigerator will help you determine if your initial thought could work out or if it will be too far away from the general cooking area to be practical. One thing to check is if there will be size constraints due to your available space. If you need a larger fridge to hold of your children’s snacks, food for entertaining, or you have a very large family then you need to make sure that the fridge and space you choose can accommodate all of this.