Gaggenau’s High-End Appliances a Perfect Fit for the Kitchen That Upgraded Design Collaborative’s Show Home

When the team at Design Collaborative – a firm that specializes in the creation of “show houses,” spaces that operate as both residences and hands-on “experience” centers – walked into Dolphin Terrace, the property didn’t feature Gaggenau appliances. Design Collaborative’s Shannon Ratcliffe (director of marketing and publishing) noted that the team wanted a change. “Rick Dellar – the homeowner – is a real at-home chef,” she notes, “and we realized that we had to have the best. Rick owns multiple homes from a winery in Sonoma to a flat in New York – and when Rick was living in Europe, that was his first experience with Gaggenau. He fell in love with the brand.”

The Gaggenau Cube, a special configuration of appliances, was the first to be specified and Ratcliffe notes that the cube has come to be known as “the jewelry of the kitchen.” It’s fitting for this property – a $20-million stunner in Irvine Terrace, Corona del Mar, with sweeping, 180-degree views of the waterfront. Designed by architect Christopher Brandon and retrofitted by Eagle Development and Construction’s Zack Eglit with design by Donna Johnson (Luxury Designs), the home is a perfect showcase for the $12.5 million in artwork that will soon adorn the walls (including work by Warhol and others). Art is another of Dellar’s passions in addition to cooking.

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The appliances are being installed and serviced by Ferguson, a company whose working relationship with Design Collaborative goes back years. “My business partner Karen Okner (president and show house producer) had been working with Ferguson for a while,” says Ratcliffe. “They’re the nicest, easiest, most collaborative, lovely people to work with.” When the appliances arrived, Ratcliffe and the rest of the group realized something – the presence of Gaggenau required other upgrades throughout the property.

“The look just wasn’t right,” notes Ratcliffe. “Once we brought Gaggenau in, that really changed the direction of everything we thought about for the kitchen. We quickly realized we needed to upgrade more. We sourced a lighting company called Hennepin to accentuate the space with custom, hand-blown light fixtures. With that change, we determined we also needed to have Buster and Punch hardware.”

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“This home really has been a collaboration. Every Tuesday we meet. We have a homeowner, a designer, a builder – a design collaborative meeting to make decisions about the direction of the home. And everyone agreed that those kitchen appliances really drove the home into an even more upscale direction.”

Ratcliffe credits what’s come to be known as the “Gaggenau Experience” for that shift. “The brand, to me, is the quintessential definition of what luxury should be. It’s quality. It’s craftsmanship. It’s elegance.

“When you’re using Gaggenau, it’s really not just an appliance – it’s more. It’s an extension of the cooking experience.”

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