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Michael Nash Space Conversion Plan Tops Regional Kitchen Competition

Master designer/remodeler Sonny Nazemian reveals practices that are making local kitchens more spacious, attractive and comfortable.

A skillful space plan enhancement and reconfiguration solution that increases the size of a 20 year old kitchen by over 30% while staying inside the envelop of the existing home has won a regional Chrysalis award for Michael Nash Design Build and Homes.


The makeover to a Fairfax Station residence was named best best kitchen in an eleven state region stretching from Maryland to Florida. Among other strategies, the remodeler eliminated an obstructive bearing wall, converted a garage bay into additional living space, deleted a stair railing to gain wall surface, and relocated several small first level rooms.


The 700 sq ft kitchen now accommodates a professional caliber cooktop range, two food prep islands and other amenities within an eclectic interior scheme that combines traditional finishwork detailing with elements of “industrial” design.


Founded in 1993, “the Chrysalis” is generally considered the most prestigious of the remodeling industry’s peer awards. Qualified Remodeler Magazine and Kitchen and Bath News are among the competition’s national media sponsors. Taken as a whole, the innovative plan transforms a builder-grade kitchen into a generous suite of rooms that includes a larger laundry room, a mudroom with customized storage spaces and a private computer work station.


The prize is one of four Chrysalis honors the Merrifield-based remodeler has received this year. In August, the firm became the first-ever recipient of the “Decade of Excellence” award, a special honor acknowledging its consistently high standards over a ten year period.

Best Kitchen
A plan that converts one bay of a three car garage into square footage needed for an expanded family garnered a regional Chrysalis award for Michael Nash Design Build and Homes. The remodeling to a Fairfax Station home was named “best kitchen” in an eleven state area stretching from Florida to Maryland. The skillful spatial re-configuration also gains a larger laundry room, a mudroom and a computer work station.

In accepting the “Best kitchen” kudos, Michael Nash founder and president Sonny Nazemian praised his company’s design team and their cost-sensitive approach to helping homeowners make effective home improvement decisions.


We’re able to offer fixed-price contracts since most of our projects are executed by Michael Nash employees; also, customers can select finishwork materials sold at cost from our show room” Nazemian discloses. “These options are integral to a business model that allows us to routinely outperform our client’s budget.”


In the case of the recent “best kitchen” winner, grappling with a floorplan configuration ill-suited to the homeowner’s current needs was the principal challenge.


“The owners wanted a better plan for their growing family which includes three kids under age ten, an au pair and a number of pets,” Nazemian recalls. “The kitchen was just too cramped and crowded relative to everyday food prep and dining requirements. They had thought about co-opting space from a garage on the western side of the house, but there was a bearing wall between the kitchen and a mudroom that segued to the three car garage.”


Also, given the owner’s wide-ranging use-requirements, the space plan called for a configuration of several adjacent rooms, and an dramatic interior design upgrade.


What to do?


“Since the second floor of the house rested on a mid-house bearing wall,” the remodeler recalls “We needed an alternative structural solution that would allow us to access more square footage inside the envelop of the existing home.”


To solve this problem, Nazemian re-routed HVAC, plumbing and electrical conduits, installed vertical supports attached to 24” horizontal I-beams all the way to the basement, then shifted second floor loads to the new infrastructure and removed the offending wall. The plan gained 250 feet of kitchen floor space

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Panorama Looking East
The cook’s work triangle is formed by a rear-facing clean-up zone, an interior wall with a six burner stove and griddle, and a food prep island with sink and built-in cutting board.

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Pantry with Wine Refrigerator
By removing a staircase railing, remodelers gained the wall space needed for glass-facing cabinets and serving station complete with a wine refrigerator.

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Laundry Room & Mud Room
The new laundry room provides ample work space and added storage. Every member of the family has a private accommodation in the new mudroom.

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