House of Har­mony


Singapore Tatler Homes - - CONTENTS -

Sit­u­ated on a fam­ily com­pound, this bright and airy home is filled with so­cial spa­ces for multi­gen­er­a­tional bond­ing

Four years ago, the mar­ried own­ers of this bun­ga­low moved into their new nest with their baby boy. Since then, many of life’s spe­cial mo­ments have passed within this bright and airy abode at Third Av­enue, mak­ing home a re­ally sweet home— with the bonus of be­ing a stone’s throw away from their ex­tended fam­ily. In­spired by the pen­tag­o­nal shape of a ski lodge, this strik­ing house is one of three in­ter­con­nected homes built on the same com­pound. “It was a shared de­ci­sion to stay close to one an­other—to en­joy el­e­ments of com­mu­nal liv­ing while hav­ing the pri­vacy of our own res­i­dence,” ex­plains the wife, whose fam­ily shares the prop­erty with her sis­ter’s fam­ily and their par­ents. This was the site of the orig­i­nal fam­ily home where the sis­ters grew up. Af­ter the lat­ter started fam­i­lies of their own, their par­ents felt the bun­ga­low was too empty for two of them and sug­gested re­plac­ing it with new abodes for all three fam­i­lies. “It’s hard to find three ad­ja­cent units in Sin­ga­pore, and clus­ter hous­ing has its lim­i­ta­tions as you can’t dic­tate the style or size of the build­ing,” ex­plains the wife, an en­tre­pre­neur in the cre­ative field. “So this be­came the best op­tion to per­son­alise our own space while liv­ing within a sin­gle plot of land.”


The fam­i­lies looked to ar­chi­tec­ture firm RT+Q to de­sign an ideal en­vi­ron­ment for har­mo­nious multi­gen­er­a­tional liv­ing. The brief was to con­struct three abodes, dis­tinct from one an­other, that would be in­ter­con­nected through com­mu­nal spa­ces such as a co-work­ing zone, a play area for the chil­dren and a pool. At the start of the project, Bali-styled homes were en vogue, but the fam­ily wished to steer as far away from that trend as pos­si­ble. In­stead, they opted for abodes in­spired by European win­ter lodges in terms of pro­por­tions and style, sit­u­ated within a trop­i­cal con­text. “Ba­li­nese style was re­ally not my thing—and all three fam­i­lies came to the con­sen­sus that it wasn’t what we wanted,” says the wife.

Led by ar­chi­tect Koh Sock Mui, the de­sign team pro­posed a barn-like struc­ture that al­ludes to its win­ter in­spi­ra­tion, as well as an L-shaped scheme that con­nects the three homes. “With such a sprawl­ing com­pound, we wanted to en­sure that the ar­chi­tec­ture re­mained light and open,” ex­plains Koh. “The three barns were de­signed to ‘float’ above the white fea­ture walls, which are the com­mon uni­fy­ing el­e­ment across the three build­ings.”


When it came to the in­te­ri­ors of each abode, the fam­i­lies took on com­pletely sep­a­rate schemes to suit their in­di­vid­ual styles. The en­tre­pre­neur­ial sis­ter took a hands-on ap­proach—to­gether with her restau­ra­teur hus­band, she se­lected ev­ery piece and dec­o­ra­tive el­e­ment to fit the Scan­di­na­vian style that they adored. For one, the cou­ple opted for light oak floor­ing to pair with the white walls and a neu­tral pal­ette. “My hus­band and I have a very sim­i­lar aes­thetic,” she ex­plains. “We knew what we liked—we’re all about be­ing sim­ple and con­tem­po­rary. We love big, open spa­ces with high ceil­ings, like a New York-style loft.” She adds, “We didn’t want the kind of home where you have to tip­toe around. I like pieces with that ease about them.”


On the first floor of the cou­ple’s home, the open-plan con­cept felt like a nat­u­ral fit. “I love it, be­cause there’s no sep­a­ra­tion be­tween the liv­ing and din­ing zones,” ex­plains the home­owner. “Fa­ther and son could be play­ing their games in the liv­ing area while I’m at the

kitchen is­land do­ing work or cook­ing.” It is dec­o­rated in a neu­tral pal­ette, paired with a sleek glass din­ing ta­ble, white chairs and a leather sofa in cream. A lean can­tilevered stair­case leads up to the se­cond storey, where the bed­rooms are sit­u­ated. In the master bed­room, a Bon­aldo bed takes pride of place in the snug space: “I like how the head­board curves in, wrap­ping you in a warm em­brace,” she says. In con­trast, the son’s room takes on a more colour­ful theme, with cheer­ful stick­ers of an­i­mals dec­o­rat­ing the walls. The master bath­room was an­other pas­sion project, as the wife had a clear idea about how she wanted the space to look. “I wanted a very spa­cious bath­room that with­stands the test of time,” she says. “I like hav­ing a dress­ing ta­ble, and a seat within a bath­room, hence the cush­ion and the head­board to cre­ate that soft­ness.” She chose to clad the en­tire bath­room in traver­tine tiles: “I love traver­tine, as it’s a lit­tle im­per­fect.” Look­ing at her cosy abode, the proud owner sums it up: “I love every­thing about our home. There is so much open space—all the kids that visit are drawn to our home, as it gives them the free­dom to run around.”


LEFT TO RIGHT The light and bright liv­ing and din­ing area is pep­pered with accessories in­spired by the son’s love of ele­phants and au­to­mo­biles; a typ­i­cally un­der­utilised space was trans­formed into a play zone

PRE­VI­OUS PAGE The barn-like ar­chi­tec­ture al­ludes to its win­try in­spi­ra­tion; the par­ents’ abode en­joys the best view of the pool and the two wings of the com­pound

LEFT TO RIGHT Soft curves and tex­tures add to the cosy feel in the master bed­room; clad in traver­tine tiles with black ac­cents, the master bath­room is de­signed with the com­forts of a ho­tel-style suite in mind

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