“The original concept was to create a serviced apartment, fully furnished with a five-star hotel vibe, that would be rentable”
As an established interior designer whose portfolio spans from Jakarta to Singapore, Sydney and Amsterdam, Roland Adam is a master of realising a client’s vision for his or her home. “I prefer the personal approach,” says the pioneer of interior-design collective ID12. “I go to their house, interview them and observe their daily activities.” No wonder that, after that, the relationship grows into a friendship and they become loyal clients.
Among Adam’s loyal clients is a family who have known him for 20 years. His recent 400 sqm Junior Penthouse project at Botanica Apartment on Jl. Sultan Iskandar Muda, South Jakarta belongs to the second generation.
“They trusted me completely, so I might say this place represents 75 percent of myself,” says Adam. “The original concept was to create a serviced apartment, fully furnished with a five-star hotel vibe, that would be rentable. As a result, I designed it in a timeless manner. I used earth-tone colours because they never go out of style.
“To liven up the atmosphere, I used playful motifs, especially for the rugs and wallpaper. In the living room, I placed red decorative pillows as an accent to the light brown couch. There are two stripy chairs in earth tone hues and I combined these with light turquoise decorative pillows with paisley motifs. It’s fun to play with motifs once in a while.”
Firmness, symmetry and a little masculinity are the three main elements that can be found throughout the penthouse, from the way Adam arranged centrepieces on the dining table to the way he placed the accessories in the room. For example, he placed two table lamps on each sideboards to balance the composition. Meanwhile, on the dining table, Adam put two stupa-shaped ornaments and placed a fresh flower arrangement between them. He added other green arrangements in the dining room.
“Recently, there has been a debate among interior designers regarding the use of real and artificial plants,” says Adam. “Maintaining real plants and flowers is not easy. Some people don’t have the time or energy to replace flowers once or twice a week. Others just find using real plants to be impractical. I personally prefer real flowers, but in the end it all comes back to what the client prefers. If they willing to do the maintenance, then we can go with fresh
flowers. If they don’t, there are a few companies out there, such as Jade, offering high-quality artificial plants. They look so real, even I can’t tell the difference! But for this special photo shoot for Prestige, I asked my friend Amalya Hasibuan to do the flowers and plants.”
How about the furniture choices? “I’m not a big fan of curved furniture,” Adam declares. “The only curved furniture I used for the penthouse are round coffee tables in the living room, which were specifically requested by the client. Otherwise, I used furniture from Forme, Meridiani, Saniharto, Moie and Missoni. The artistic wallpaper is by Arte and the rugs by Fio. The penthouse is even more special, I feel, because of Ratna Darmawan’s magic touch. She is a lighting designer from SSA Lighting and also a good friend of mine.”
Adam spent three months designing the penthouse. His favourite room there is the living room. “Because this is an apartment, there’s no separation between living room and family room,” he says. “It’s fun, yet challenging, to create a room that is comfortable for both guests and the members of a family. To overcome the problem, I placed a big couch for the family in the middle. It features big cushions so it is very comfortable. For the guests, I put two chairs on the other side.”
Joe D’urso, Aldo Rossi and the late Jaya Ibrahim are Adam’s favourite interior designers. “They taught me the principles of designing,” he says. “Discipline is important. You can’t put things in randomly, just because they look good. In the end, I always put my client first. It’s a matter of giving up your own ego. At the end of this project, the family decided not to rent out the place but to live there themselves. The penthouse became comfortable for them because it mirrored their way of living.”
“Discipline is important. You can’t put things in randomly, just because they look good”
THE LIVING ROOM IN EARTH TONE COLOURS
THE DINING ROOM EVOKING FIRMNESS, SYMMETRY AND A LITTLE MASCULINITY