Oh, I almost forgot to mention the arched opening. It used to be a small door near the fridge, and a few walls with closet space where the light switches are. Again, click the images for a larger view.
The next photo shows the marble tiles and the counter top samples. The samples to the left are a man-made material of about 97% quartz. They're supposed to be practically indestructable and never need to be sealed. Even when holding them in my hand, I could not tell they are synthetic. They chose the one on the bottom right for the counter top.