The kitchen island remains one of the most popular layouts
Stainless steel, a longtime staple in commercial kitchens thanks to its heat-, stain- and scratch-resistant properties, has become a popular option for residential kitchen countertops in recent years.
Appealing to both industrial and modern sensibilities, this versatile (and incredibly, chef-tested durable) metal surface introduces a distinct shiny and sleek feel to any style of kitchen.
Like stainless steel refrigerators, stainless steel kitchen islands are prone to showing fingerprints and smudges. Fortunately, cleaning is simple, and certain finishes like brushed stainless steel can more easily hide smudges.
Custom-fabricating stainless steel—for countertops or for kitchen islands—can be pricier than other countertop options (on par with granite), though stainless-steel surfaces don't require nearly the amount of maintenance (such as sealant or oiling). If a custom-designed stainless steel kitchen island isn't in the budget, don't discount the convenience (or hard-working properties) of professional-grade stainless steel work tables, which can offer just as much storage and counter space as a custom stainless steel kitchen island. Some models may even allow for table-style seating—the best of both worlds.