We are in the process of starting our dream home build, hoping to break ground in March (once it thaws around here). We modified (made bigger) the plans from the 1999 Life Mag Dream House. I've enclosed a pic from the magazine. Our kitchen will have a very similar layout, except the bank of cabs on the far left (btwn windows and french doors) will be double ovens. We are thinking of placing a side-facing cabinet between the ovens and window to house dishes as the dishwasher will be immediately underneath, and then dead-ending the opposing wall of cabinets into the wall. The windows will be sizable (I think 3 double-hungs totalling about 104 inches?) and will have a nice view of our wooded backyard. That set of windows will be also be mirrored further down to the left of the french doors in the living room. The entire first floor will have 9ft ceilings, except for a cross-shaped walkway from the front door bisecting the LR and kitchen to the french doors out back (you can see this in the pic) and from the stairs bisecting the kitchen and DR out through the pantry and mudroom to the garage, which will be lowered to 8ft.
Hubby and I are in disagreement about how high to run the cabinets. I'd like them to go all the way to the ceiling. I think it looks a bit more finished. Especially if they are topped with molding, and don't just end into a soffit. He wants to stop around 8ft and do a soffit. We are both on the taller side (i'm 5ft 7 and he is 6ft 2) so reaching the highest cabs isnt really an issue, realizing that most of what will be stored up there would be rarely used items anyway. I thought about making those cabs glass front and storing some of our "bar" ware up there. Since the "back" wall will have no uppers, and the side wall will have the fridge, microwave (NOT OTR), and cook top (so few uppers there as well), I am certain will can find use to fill those cabs.
If you have 9 ft ceilings, could you share some pics? I'm curious what others have done.