Interviewing Constantin Oltean, owner of bulthaup Greenwich.

Since you’ve been in Greenwich, have there been any special requests that clients are asking for?

We only have a couple of projects in Greenwich so far, most of our projects are still in New York City and Hamptons with a few of them outside tri-state area. (Jackson Hole, Los Angeles,  Miami and even Nevis Island in Caribbean). After being a bulthaup designer in NYC for more than 10 years and working on projects all over the US, and outside, I can say that the request for excellence is universal. One of my concerns in coming to Greenwich was that this area is very traditional. I’m happy to say that our local market has a healthy amount of contemporary architecture and more importantly, contemporary  interiors. I would like to add that, so far, our Greenwich clients showed a high level of aesthetic requirements, a great understanding of our product’s long term value and also great appreciation for its timeless design & great quality.

What is your favorite phase of kitchen design? 

It is hard to say, as I really enjoy all of them. The early budget estimate stage is very dynamic and unique. We connect with the client and exchange information to better understand their vision, needs and preferences. I LOVE people  in general and I really enjoy working with them so this stage is both pleasant and easy for me.
Next is our kitchen design phase. This is a very interesting and fun part as we “play” with ideas and concepts to refine the overall kitchen design in every single aspect and detail.
Installation part is very exciting and beautiful because we see something that was initially only in our mind, then on paper and then finally is taking shape in front of our eyes.
Post installation service is great because we get the chance to reconnect with our clients. We see and hear stories about how they use and enjoy their new kitchen space.

Photo by Andy Ryan (


What are the hot items for 2019?

As a designer I am observing the “latest trends” to keep myself up to date with all the market novelties, but I believe in timeless beauty, great design, and impeccable quality. These are the truly important ingredients that allow us to create unique, beautiful and functional kitchens for our clients. These kitchens will improve our client’s quality of life through their refined aesthetic, excellent quality, and great long-term value that is added to their project and home.
I was lucky enough to hear many times “Having a bulthaup kitchen was by far the best decision we made on our entire project”
Yet, I’ve never heard a client saying “I only wish we would have used the trendy Ultra Violet hue for our kitchen cabinetry”.
To go back to novelties there is actually a technical element that caught my attention: worktops that you can cook on. This types of worktops combined with induction cooking modules installed underneath them eliminates completely the visual presence of a cooktop while providing the same functionality.

Is there a line coming out that you are excited about?

bulthaup is constantly working on new kitchen concepts and I was happy to see few of them throughout the years. Only the absolutely perfect ones will get the chance to make it all the way to manufacturing stage, so it always takes a while. Our most recent added products are the Solitaire collection. These are beautifully crafted objects that make the transition between kitchen and living room area. By displaying your personal objects in bulthaup b Solitaire, one becomes the curator of his own living space.

Photo by Andy Ryan (


How do you tackle designing a smaller kitchen?

Smaller spaces are always a challenge to design.
We had many small kitchen projects, mostly in NYC and other urban areas.
It was always a challenge to find the perfect design balance that allows for the absolute best functionality and also dramatically improve the overall aesthetic of the kitchen space.
I really like these challenging projects as the result is significantly more impressive giving the space limitations.
On such small projects we discover the real measure of a designer’s experience, creativity and skills level.

If a client were to get carried away with wanting too many features, does that make it more difficult, or is that a good thing?

It is significantly easier to accommodate many wishes from a client that knows what he or she wants vs. trying to accommodate ever changing wishes of a client that has a hard time deciding on their preferences.
We rarely had such indecisive clients but it happens. We assist them, as we do with all our clients, by providing fully explained kitchen design options with comprehensive information on all the variable elements. In addition to this we also provide realistic renderings that will give our clients a better sense of how their kitchen will look and feel with the different finishes and design options.
The goal is to discover together that perfect balance of functionality and aesthetic that would work for them and also for their home.

Photo by Andy Ryan (

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