The guest kitchen in Marc Pachter’s basement has a large portrait of Pachter with his son, daughter-in-law, and daughter. “It’s good design to know that you don’t have to use a small work in a very small space,” he says. Photograph by Anice Hoachlander.
Compact and Bold
In the basement of former National Portrait Gallery director Marc Pachter’s home in DC’s Cleveland Park is a small guest suite with its own kitchen. (See the upstairs kitchen on page 151.)Pachter wanted bold colors and dramatic elements, but the basement was dark and its ceiling low. To compensate, DC architect Reena Racki added a window looking onto the backyard garden—to the left of the table in this photo—and used white Celador, a synthetic material made in part from quartz, for the floors plus bright halogen lights.
Pachter created the suite in part so that when his son, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter come to visit, they have their own space. Because they wouldn’t be preparing big meals down there, there’s no range. Instead, the kitchen features a small undercounter refrigerator as well as a microwave, dishwasher, espresso machine, and DeLonghi toaster. Racki got the Inox table—just 251⁄2 inches across—from Switzerland and the chairs from Design Within Reach.
One wall is adorned with a family photo—of Pachter, his son, daughter-in-law, and daughter. “It’s a professional photograph, so it could be blown up big enough to cover the wall,” Pachter says. “It’s very good design to know that you don’t have to use a small work in a very small space.”