Galley Kitchen Renovation Ideas

Get inspired with our galley kitchen ideas in Australia. Optimise your space with a sleek and functional galley kitchen design from our team of experts.

By traditional standards, a galley kitchen is a long, narrow layout flanked by kitchen cabinets on each side of a single walkway. They were inspired and named after the kitchen in a ship, designed to have everything within arm’s reach to ensure both time and space were used efficiently. Now, the galley has a more relaxed interpretation with many open-plan kitchens utilising the layout in a social and spacious way to suit the demands of modern living.  

Why choose a galley kitchen?

Pairing a space with a layout can feel like a tricky game of mix and match; working with a professional team makes the decision a lot easier. But if you’re in the early stages, weighing up options and thinking of ways to design a functional, modern kitchen, here are a few reasons to consider a galley kitchen:


Traditionally designated for compact kitchen designs, galley kitchens can be just as effective in bigger spaces. In a larger kitchen, the island is usually freestanding and acts as a gathering place. A small space may instead utilise the two-kitchen-bench design by anchoring the workspaces to parallel walls, another great use of space. 

Efficient workspaces

For avid home chefs, a galley kitchen layout can be a dream. With two parallel workstations, usually a kitchen island and stationary bench or two benches, movement between the sink, range, and kitchen appliances is minimised for a more enjoyable and intuitive cooking experience. 

Creates atmosphere

Whether a galley kitchen layout is used as the social hub of a spacious open-plan design or within a compact footprint, the cosy environment it creates sets the tone and can easily transform entire living spaces. 

Cost of a galley kitchen renovation in 2023

Elements we use to determine the cost of a kitchen renovation are constantly in flux, especially in recent years with unprecedented supply chain challenges and material availability. In this article, we elaborate on the cost of a kitchen renovation which typically ranges from $20,000*- $80,000*. 

In terms of galley kitchen renovations, we’ve completed designs with varying project scopes from basic to high-end including a small country-style galley kitchen for about $50,000* and an upscale chef’s galley kitchen for over $160,000*.

Tips for a galley kitchen renovation in Australia

Work with a professional

Not all kitchen ideas are good ones. Or at least not for every space. Working with a kitchen design professional ensures the choices you make for your kitchen will suit your space, lifestyle, and budget.

Optimise your space

Appliances and accessories can make or break a kitchen’s functionality, so be intentional with your selections. A galley sink is a multi-purpose workspace where you can prep, clean, and present everything you need for a meal. If you’re tight on space, options like this maximise what’s available. 

Galley kitchen renovation ideas

If you’re choosing a galley kitchen as a space-saving layout, don’t forget to take advantage of vertical space! In city apartments, where space is at a premium, sprawling cabinetry and grand kitchen bench ideas aren’t always realistic. However, utilising what you have from floor to ceiling - upper and lower cabinetry on both sides for example - maximises your kitchen storage and still offers a clutter-free workspace.  

For a modern take on the galley kitchen, expand the bench and layout slightly to include additional seating options. Despite not being a true representation of a galley, the core concepts are the same; the greater part of the bench and cabinetry flank a singular hallway, with the extension into an L-shape island as seen here in this Melbourne renovation

Keen to learn more about kitchen design options? Check out our article about the ins and outs of kitchen design here. 

Planning a galley kitchen renovation with Refresh

Niche considerations excepted, designing and planning a galley kitchen is no different from any other style. But that’s not to say it’s straightforward. How do you find the best kitchen builders in your area? Which are the most durable kitchen cabinets? Is marble a good choice for kitchen benchtops? The questions can seem endless!

We know renovations, especially kitchens, can feel overwhelming. It’s an area of your home that gets used every day and is essential to the flow and function of your household. You can’t afford for things to go awry. That’s why at Refresh, we’ve designed our 5-step process to manage costs and timelines up front with full transparency. 

Our Renovation Consultants provide comprehensive project management and robust customer support from the very beginning through to the final delivery. This includes sourcing premium materials, offering professional advice and suggestions, liaising with the council, or body corporation if you’re in an urban dwelling, coordinating reliable tradespeople, and anything else your project entails.

We’ve completed thousands of successful renovations within Australia and around the world; homeowners have come to expect consistently high-quality work from our team. It’s our mission to ensure we provide an excellent experience for homeowners, and we work diligently to deliver results on time and within budget. 

Want to maximise the space in your kitchen?

We can help! Get in touch with a Renovation Consultant to chat about whether a galley kitchen, or other kitchen design, is suitable for your property and lifestyle. 

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