At their most basic, kitchen islands improve function and efficiency in the kitchen, adding valuable work space. But they can do so much more. Outfitted with a sink, a cooktop, warming drawers, refrigerator drawers, or a dishwasher, an island makes food preparation and cleanup much more convenient and often more social. Add space for counter stools, and you have a spot for breakfast or snacks. Positioned as a room divider, a kitchen island becomes a self-service buffet for a party.
Kitchen islands work well in U-shape and L-shape kitchens because they shorten the distance between work centers and direct traffic outside the work core. Islands also add beauty and architectural interest to the kitchen.