When Dame Kelly Holmes got in touch to ask for help with her kitchen makeover, find out how we supported her plan with Caple high-performance appliances
It’s not often we get the chance to work with a double Olympic champion. So, when we heard Dame Kelly Holmes was planning her own kitchen makeover, we were delighted. In fact, she got in touch to ask for our help to furnish her new heart of the home. How you may ask? We helped her create an enviable cooking arena with a complete collection of Caple high-performance appliances.
For those of you who don’t know, double Olympic Champion Dame Kelly Holmes is one of the UK’s most successful and inspirational athletes. When she won gold in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, in the 800m and 1500m events, she became the first Briton in more than 80 years to do so. In addition to her Olympic achievements, Dame Kelly is a Commonwealth and European champion. She has collected seven Gold, eight Silver and four Bronze medals throughout the course of her career. She has also won BBC Sports Personality of the Year and European Athlete of the Year. In fact, in 2005, she was honoured with a Damehood from the Queen.
Dame Kelly grew up in Kent, then joined the army at the age of 18. She was initially an HGV driver, later becoming a PT instructor. The tenacity and determination that characterised her early life was instrumental in helping her overcome a series of recurring physical injuries. As a result, she would eventually fulfil her Olympic dream. More recently, Dame Kelly has fought hard to recover from COVID-19. This left even her, a former elite athlete still in amazing shape, dizzy, drained and lethargic. Happily, she is now well on the road to recovery. She recently supported fitness coach Joe Wicks in his 24-hour workout for charity Children in Need.
If all that exercise helped Dame Kelly to work up an appetite, her new kitchen is perfectly equipped to help her refuel in style. Diet and nutrition are key elements for any successful athlete. And, as you’d expect, Dame Kelly has created a top-quality environment to cook in. Her new heart of the home is now fully equipped with Caple appliances! Read on to find out exactly what it features in our kitchen case study.
In the beginning…
Fitted with bespoke Burlanes furniture, Dame Kelly’s kitchen makeover was designed to complement the traditional styling of her period home. However, this would not compromise the benefits of contemporary living. “I live in a 5-bedroom detached house in the Kent countryside. For my new kitchen, I wanted a classic look with a modern twist. I love the result! It’s very spacious and light” Dame Kelly tells us.
Dame Kelly’s former kitchen was in the same space, but had a completely different footprint. “The new kitchen took five months to renovate. I had three walls and a chimney knocked out and we also created new window openings. We needed a huge amount of steel joists in the ceiling to form the new open-plan room,” she reveals. All that disruption, however, was more than worth it for this kitchen makeover.
“I’m in it all the time – it’s the main room of the house,” Dame Kelly confides. “It’s so much better being completely open plan. During lockdown 1, this kitchen was used as my office, studio, gym and lounge.”
And Dame Kelly has high hopes for her new kitchen now this latest lockdown is over. “I can’t wait to entertain family and friends when the current restrictions are lifted. I have a big family and lots of lovely friends. So, I will definitely entertain more once we’re allowed to do so,” she confirms.
Lockdowns 1 and 2 have provided Dame Kelly with the opportunity to experiment with lots of different recipes. And she has an envy-inducing bank of ovens to choose from, selected from our best-selling Sense Steel collection. Dame Kelly explains: “I am cooking more because of lockdown. I do a lot of fish dishes in the oven.”
Dame Kelly chose a bank of ovens for her new kitchen, featuring models from our best-selling Sense Steel collection. Her first oven choice is our C2402SS pyrolytic model, which features 14 functions and a roomy 67-litre capacity. This appliance also has full touch controls for quick and easy navigation.
With our signature MotionHeat+ technology, there’s no need to preheat – and dishes reach their desired temperature rapidly. Best of all, this pyrolytic oven features labour-saving, state-of-the-art self-cleaning technology. Even baked-on grime carbonises into fine ash, which can be wiped away quickly with a damp cloth. This way, Dame Kelly can spend more time on things she enjoys. So there’s no need to scrub away stubborn leaks and spills.
Dame Kelly’s other oven choice is our SO110SS. This combination steam model features ten functions including steam, fan heat with steam, boost for rapid preheat and descale. Steam cooking continues to grow so much in popularity, not least because it’s healthy, delicious and energy-efficient. Our versatile built-in combination steam ovens offer the best of both worlds, in terms of both steam and conventional cooking methods.
So it’s easy to see why Dame Kelly included one in her new kitchen. “I chose a combination steam oven in this kitchen makeover, because it’s so useful. I wanted a bank of ovens, because I find it easier to have everything in one place – and it looks good!” she reveals.
As for those recipes that need super-speedy cooking, Dame Kelly’s kitchen also includes our built-in CM110SS combination microwave. This model incorporates a huge range of functions, including eight auto cooking programmes. These take the guesswork out of cooking, thanks to a sensor. This automatically sets and maintains the correct power levels and cooking times for a variety of foods, including vegetables, meat and soup.
Now you see it…or do you? Dame Kelly chose a range of built-in, integrated Caple appliances – including a fridge, freezer and dishwasher – to complement her new kitchen.
Dame Kelly might be a big fan of fish, but she’ll be taking no chances with the Christmas turkey she is cooking for her family this year. This is thanks to the Meater+. This smart wireless meat probe (which can also be used for fish!) uses Bluetooth technology to monitor and assess cooking times. Simply connect it to your phone or tablet and select how you’d like your food to be cooked (eg medium rare). Then your device notifies you when it’s ready.
Out of sight
It’s obvious from this kitchen makeover that Dame Kelly is a big fan of built-in appliances. Both her larder fridge and freezer, and her dishwasher are integrated to create a more seamless finish. She says: “As they are all integrated, they complement the clean lines in my kitchen perfectly. The fridge and freezer are a fab size, too!”
Perfect for modern living, our in-column RiL1795 fridge and RiF1795 frost-free freezer hide neatly behind furniture doors. Big enough to cope with an Olympian appetite, they also come with a whole host of useful features. These include a fully adjustable door shelf and our signature Caple fresh technology in the fridge. There’s also a super freeze mode and top LED striplight in the freezer. Importantly, for an open-plan space, these appliances are quiet. The fridge has a maximum sound level of just 40dB (normal conversation levels are 59dB).
Make ours a double! Dame Kelly – a gin connoisseur – showcases her impressive spirits collection in her spacious Caple wine cabinet.
One appliance that most certainly isn’t hidden away, however, is Dame Kelly’s wine cabinet. Now that her official competition days are over, the athlete has become something of a white spirits connoisseur. “I mainly drink gin. I have a large selection of different ones, and this cabinet is perfect for displaying them all,”she explains.
The cabinet in question is our Classic WC1792 model. This features a super-stylish finish, courtesy of its one-piece stainless steel doors. Inside, there’s UV/heat-free white LED lighting and fan-circulated cool air for even temperature distribution. It’s vibration-free, to prevent any disturbance to the wine. And it can hold up to 89 Bordeaux-style wine bottles – or plenty of gin, of course!
Dame Kelly is looking forward to hosting her family and friends when restrictions allow. Luckily, she won’t be wasting any precious time washing up, thanks to her new Di652 integrated dishwasher. Versatile, stylish, quiet and efficient, this model features an array of high-level specifications. These include express wash, extra/turbo drying and a 1-24hr delayed timer option. It has 14 place settings, a six-level water softening system, and a choice of eight programmes. With an A+++ energy class rating, it’s even economical to run.
Would you like a kitchen like Dame Kelly’s? Simply get in touch, and our resident design team will be happy to advise.
All images © Sarah London Photographer.
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