Highsnobiety

When it comes to which room in the house you spend the most time in, I can guarantee that the majority of you will say the kitchen — and there’s no surprise there.

Kitchens are a cultural hub, a contemporary hearth, a place for experimentation, relaxation, and everything in between. Whether you’re standing around a kitchen island drinking wine with your friends, cooking to unwind and help your mental health, testing new recipes for your next supper club, or catching up with your partner after a long day at work, kitchens are a safe space to unpack almost every aspect of life. 

The modern kitchen is so much more than just a place to eat and cook. It’s a place of interpersonal connection, of work, of gathering, of creativity, and of technological evolution. Kitchens have become a place to play and merge all facets of society, from food and art to design and fashion. Think of all the trends we’ve seen this year so far — chefcore and omelets (thanks to hit show The Bear), ‘cook with me’ TikToks and kitchen renovations (shoutout creator community), designer kettles and salt and pepper shakers (nice one brand team), not to mention the fun BTS restaurant clips and celebrity interviews (hats off to you chefs and pop culture personalities). Kitchens are everywhere, and with good reason — but what makes one perfect?

This is where 2024’s Salone del Mobile.Milano comes in. The Milanese Design Fair is the world’s largest (click here for the full low-down) and is celebrating its 62nd edition this year with a sharp focus on kitchens (alongside bathrooms and 2000 other design and furniture exhibitors). With a whopping 300,000 visitors from around the world flocking to the Italian city, Salone del Mobile.Milano has solidified its spot as the place to be if you want to know more about the future of design — and this year, we want to know everything and anything about what our kitchens are going to be like in the years to come. 

Your Highsnobiety privacy settings have blocked this Instagram post.

Let’s take ourselves back to 1926 when architect Margarete Schütte-Lihotsky designed The Frankfurt Kitchen. A feminist and Marxist, Schütte-Lihotsky wanted to make a point — that kitchens were not and did not have to be a feminine space anymore. Designed like a laboratory focused on rationalization, efficiency, and workflow, The Frankfurt Kitchen was the first step towards providing physical comfort and minimizing unnecessary steps — it was also easily reproducible making it perfect to be installed en masse. From swivel stools and gas stoves to built-in organized storage and adjustable lighting, this influential model was the gateway of kitchen design that kickstarted some of the technical elements we see today. 

Kitchens these days aren’t exactly replicas of one another like they were back in the day. Now, they come in all shapes, sizes and materials. Some are overly high-spec, fitted with all the latest gadgets like talking fridges and voice-activated bins; some are focused on bespoke storage and floating islands, and others try to reference industrial kitchens with their stainless steel surfaces. Whatever your culinary vision, there is one red thread between all kitchen designs that we’re seeing this year, and that is some smart sophistication. 

Your Highsnobiety privacy settings have blocked this Instagram post.

Time to let go of that maximalist color-clashing aesthetic, 2024 is all about connecting material, minimalism, and muted palettes. Kitchen architects and brands are exploring exciting methods to create seamless experiences, from clever design tricks and hidden compartments to innovative new ways to incorporate textures and craftsmanship. I bet your favorite content creator has a tiled backsplash, am I right? Or what about some chequered paintwork? Metal islands or shelving? Oh, and what’s up with all those cream-colored matching appliances? If there’s one thing to take note of, it’s to make sure your kitchen feels calm and welcoming — after all, it is the heart of your home.

Edi Snaidero, the Director in charge of the Assarredo Kitchen Group, who is present at this year’s Salone del Mobile.Milano said, “The kitchen is the most open and interactive space in the home. A technical appliance presented as a designer product that creates the setting where family, guests, and friends all interact most closely.” This year’s fair exhibitors feature some of the biggest names in the design world all with their hot takes on the next kitchen sensation. 

Very Simple: Kitchen is a brand that’s all about stainless steel — but in all colors. Its modular and customizable units have a sustainable approach with durability in mind, and although they may be quiet in terms of design, they are undoubtedly eye-catching at the same time. If you’re thinking of upgrading your work surface, this is the way to go (especially if you want your kitchen to give off some 2028 energy).

Another strong contender in the design scene is none other than the eponymous brand Molteni&C. Celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, the Italian group is one of the only internationally acknowledged labels that combines a healthy dose of investment into research and development alongside constant collaborations with world-renowned designers. Everything from neutral color palettes and technologically advanced lighting to brutalist cabinets and wooden countertops is what makes Molteni&C one of the most progressive design brands in the world. I mean, just take a look at some of its Dada-engineered kitchens, and you’ll know what I mean.

If materiality is your way of giving your kitchen a well-deserved upgrade, then look no further than Poliform. The brand is known for its furnishing accessories — lacquered kitchens, metal kitchens, natural stone kitchens, wood kitchens, laminate kitchens, Poliform has it all. With a design philosophy rooted in smart systems where ambient architecture is married with tactile experiences, Poliform thinks about how you feel in your kitchen, not only how it looks.

Looking to the future means looking to Elica. ‘Designing the dreams of tomorrow’s customers today’ is its motto — but there’s one thing in particular that the brand is truly the master of. An accessory that may seem small and unnoticeable, but nonetheless is a game-changer when it comes to cooking. Yes, it’s the humble kitchen hood. If you live in Berlin like me, you’ll know that kitchen hoods are a rare commodity, which means frying is out of the question, but Elica has revolutionized the traditional concept of kitchen hoods. High indoor air quality, Wi-fi connection, quality sensors, and elegant lighting mean that Elica’s hoods are now the main character in your kitchen. And it’s not just above your cooker that they dabble in. Those induction hobs with extractors in the center that suck your cooking fumes before you even see them are Elica as well. It’s all about air quality for the brand — and why shouldn’t it be when you’re in the kitchen? Alongside many other built-in technology masters, Elica will present its latest creations at the “Technology For The Kitchen” event during Salone del Mobile.Milano to dive into visions of the present and future. 

So, there are many ways you can level up your kitchen design this year without a total makeover. Maybe a fresh coat of paint will do the trick? Or a new wooden countertop? It might even be something as small as a ceramic pestle and mortar. And if it is an all out renovation, then some of Salone del Mobile.Milano’s exhibitors are worth taking into consideration. Our cultural zeitgeist tells us that ease and aesthetics are paramount when it comes to modern design, but so are comfort and calm. Whatever it is, if you’re spending almost every evening in this one part of your house, it better tick all your design dream boxes. 

Find out about this year's Salone del Mobile.Milano here.

We Recommend
  • Not In Milan—HOKA and Slipmode Break A Sweat At Salone
    • Sneakers
    • sponsored
  • Italian Genius Molteni&C Celebrates 90 Years Of Design Excellence
    • Design
    • sponsored
  • Thom Browne's First Time in Milan Was a World-Class Snooze (EXCLUSIVE)
    • Style
  • From Bar Basso to Inter: All The Collabs We’re Dropping for Not In Milan
    • Style
  • Exploring Design Icons with Salone del Mobile.Milano
    • Sneakers
  • Kohler x Samuel Ross Is Throwing Everything and the Kitchen Sink at You
    • Design
What To Read Next
  • It's Naruto x Crocs Time (Again)
    • Sneakers
  • Margiela & Salomon Have Serious Slip-On Goodness on Their Hands
    • Sneakers
  • For Louis Vuitton, Former Rivals Federer & Nadal Take a Hike (EXCLUSIVE)
    • Style
  • Dogs Are the Main Character at Cannes
    • Style
  • Crocs' First Fashionable Sneaker Is Finally Launching
    • Sneakers
  • At Celine Winter '24, a Fantastic Symphony of Sleek Clothes
    • Style