Mona Wilson has spent the past 25 years creating dream homes for clients. When it was finally time to build her forever home, she drew on that experience to create this unique design near Denver's Highlands and Berkley neighborhoods.
The house that originally occupied the property was 115 years old. As the remodel began, Mona quickly realized that extensive renovations—from the foundation to the electrical system—would be required. She pivoted to a new build and managed the entire design and construction process herself, careful to keep the character and beauty of the Highlands/Berkley area intact.
This was one of Mona's first design and construction projects in Denver, so she didn't have her usual team of contractors to call upon. One of her biggest challenges was finding and hiring local companies that would understand the personal nature of her design and trust her judgment. Early in the project, Mona had to push back when she was questioned about her decision to include a coffered diamond pattern on the floor and ceiling and had contractors try to change the locations of a wall and the refrigerator.
"I said, "No, you won't. I designed it the way I want it," Mona laughs while recalling. "Taking on this entire project as a new designer here in Denver was definitely a challenge. However, I learned a ton about Denver and the design world in this part of the country and loved every minute of it."
Mona describes the kitchen style as "classic modern farmhouse" and explains that it combines her favorite design elements, curated over an entire career in interior design. High windows made of rain glass let in abundant light, and double crown moldings take full advantage of the high ceilings. A large quartzite island is the centerpiece of the open-concept kitchen, and warm, natural wood columns provide visual distinction between the living and dining areas.
The custom, gunmetal and brass range hood perfectly accents the marble and brass backsplash above the 48" rangetop.
While this design is undeniably stunning, it is also intelligently segmented with functionality in mind. The 45-inch Ruvati entertaining sink has dual faucets and a built-in prep station. Two Monogram refrigerator drawers, a trash compactor, and the Monogram dishwasher—all hidden in plain sight by custom panels—are built into the island within easy reach of the sink. This gives Mona easy access to everything she needs to prepare delicious meals, even when guests inevitably congregate in the kitchen.
Down on the end of the island is the baking station. A Monogram wall oven with French doors allows items to be removed from the oven without awkwardly leaning over the door. The design is inspired by commercial kitchens and features a chain-drive mechanism so both doors can be opened simultaneously with one hand.
Paired with the wall oven is a Monogram 5-in-1 oven with Advantium Technology, which allows it to be used as a convection oven, toaster oven, warming/proofing oven, precision cook oven, and microwave. At 1.7 cubic feet, this oven features a large 16-inch turntable, allowing full rotation of a 9" x 13" casserole dish.
The real hero of the baking station is the Monogram hearth oven. It emulates the performance of a wood-fired brick oven and is perfect for baking everything from Neapolitan-style pizza to soft artisanal bread. This oven does more than bake, though. Capable of temperatures up to 1,300 degrees, it is also great for roasting vegetables and fish.
Mona's family loves to eat well and entertain frequently, so it was important for the kitchen to flow seamlessly into the dining area and outdoor space. To accomplish this, the entire wall between the dining room and the patio is made of large, retractable, sliding glass doors that can be opened to blur the line between interior and exterior.
The dining area includes another feature perfect for entertaining, the Monogram Wine Sommelier.
This meticulously-engineered refrigerator has storage for up to 106 bottles and two temperature-controlled zones to keep red and white wines at the ideal temperature for serving or letting bottles age.
When asked why she went with Monogram, Mona said, "I've had Wulf and Subzero, but the features Monogram offers are just better."
Mona is thrilled with how her vision has become a reality and feels that all the long nights she spent designing, drawing, and hand-picking every element of this stunning kitchen have finally paid off. She looks forward to enjoying the final product with friends and family and is excited to join the Denver design community as she builds her new business.