For the love of kitchens - Kitchen and Bathroom NZ
For the love of kitchens

For the love of kitchens

Polaris Compact: an elegant and modern slimline finish for cabinets and benchtops

Words by Justin Foote

Undertaking a new kitchen project is both exciting and demanding and given the plethora of kitchen surface products on the market, it can be quite the challenge choosing the right product for your needs. A trusted craftsman with a high level of expertise and product knowledge can take the hard work out of getting just what you want.

Rhys Mellor, Director of Love Kitchens, has more than 25 years’ experience as a cabinet maker working in Europe, specialising in work for super yachts. Having returned to New Zealand, Rhys and his wife, Jo, set up a family-run business building bespoke kitchens and furniture.

“I know how daunting it can be when you’re starting out with a project and you’re wanting to create something that is a reflection of yourself rather than something that looks like what everyone else has and the first hurdle is trying to decide which materials to choose.

“With boat building, a key consideration is robustness. Galley kitchens have to withstand not only a lot of physical stressors but also the rigours of a marine environment while maximising every square inch; that’s why high-grade plywood and laminates are the materials of choice as they fulfill all of those requirements. It’s also why we choose to build with them when we’re crafting our indoor and outdoor kitchens.”

At just 12mm thick, Polaris Compact is a slimline product ideal for creating sleek drawers and cabinets.

Crafting bespoke kitchens by hand

Rhys was contacted by a former client who was looking to convert a garage into an office/studio space and wanted some bespoke cabinetry and furniture made, as well as a kitchenette installed.

“We’ve worked with this client on a few occasions over the past five years, beginning with designing and installing a new kitchen. That then progressed to creating an outdoor kitchen and further still to a cabana bar.

“For this project, the client wanted a space that maximised the usable area and which offered total flexibility all within a modern, casually sophisticated aesthetic,” says Rhys.

“Given the relatively constrained footprint, we wanted a product that would offer multiple usage options, that would be hard wearing while retaining its good looks and that offered a slimline profile that would allow us to maximise the space available. Polaris Compact from Plytech was the ideal solution.”

The ultra-matte finish of Polaris Compact imparts a rich, luxurious aesthetic, creating a high-end look.

Polaris Compact: clean-lined aesthetics with built-in performance

Polaris Compact is a solid compact laminate that has been specifically designed for kitchen benchtops and cabinetry applications, as well as for furniture and high-end joinery. At only 12mm thick you can achieve a true slimline aesthetic on cabinet fronts and on benchtops.

“Polaris Compact is a fantastic product,” says Rhys. “Compared to some of the laminate options out there it is quite a hard product to work with and requires the skill of a professional but that only reflects the superior result you can achieve.

“We have completed two kitchens recently using Polaris Compact and in both instances the clients have had nothing but praise for the finished result.”

Rhys says that one of the features that he finds particularly pleasing is the solid full-colour core, which does away with the need to band the cut edges.

“As the product comes in large-format sheets there’s a bit of work involved in cutting it down to the required sizes. The fact that the colour goes the whole way through means that not only is there less work getting the cabinets or bench up to scratch finish-wise, it also means there are no veneers to peel away over time, meaning the end result will remain looking as good in years to come as it does freshly completed.”

Available in large-format sheets, Polaris Compact is suitable for a range of applications in the kitchen.

Polaris Compact: features for a modern world

Another feature is the super matte finish, which resists fingerprints and only requires a wipe over with a damp cloth to clean. It is also heat and scratch resistant.

“We are constantly receiving comments from satisfied customers about the finish of Polaris Compact, which not only feels smooth and velvety to the touch but also, thanks to its low light reflectivity properties, imparts a rich, luxurious aesthetic,” says Plytech Marketing Manager, Harmen Kamsteeg.

“We have found that Polaris Compact is finding a market with people who wanted the good looks and durability of natural stone but from a product that offered great value.

“These clients are achieving the same sumptuous, high-end look with Polaris Compact and thanks to its ability to come back looking like new with just a wipe down using a microfibre cloth, there are no concerns around stains or unsightly marks marring the surface.”

Polaris Compact comes in three colours—white, graphite and black—and is compatible with the Expando T system from Blum, allowing homeowners to achieve a clean, handleless look for their cabinetry. 

Learn more about using Polaris Compact on your next project.

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