AWAY FROM IT ALL

With the right de­sign ap­proach, a down­town home can be trans­formed into a re­lax­ing retreat in the heart of the city. LYNN TAN finds out how.

Home & Decor (Singapore) - - Contents -

With the right de­sign ap­proach, a down­town home can be trans­formed into a re­lax­ing retreat in the heart of the city.

when home­owner Tony Tan first met Tommy Lai from TLDe­signs, he gave a very clear brief: a mod­ern in­te­rior that’s lux­u­ri­ous yet un­der­stated, with a hint of “Asian-ness” to re­flect his Per­anakan roots. As an avid art col­lec­tor, the banker asked for as many blank walls as pos­si­ble so he could hang up his art pieces, with a well-planned light­ing scheme de­signed to show­case them.

“Although the unit was well­main­tained, I wanted some mas­sive changes – to cre­ate an open-con­cept kitchen and an open-con­cept study that is ver­sa­tile enough to serve as a guest room,” Tony adds.

To achieve the client’s re­quire­ments, Tommy re­con­fig­ured some of the spa­ces within the unit, start­ing with the ex­ist­ing study ad­ja­cent to the main en­trance, which has been con­verted into a wet kitchen and yard. “The de­mo­li­tion of the orig­i­nal kitchen walls to cre­ate an open area for loung­ing also al­lows more light into the liv­ing room,” Tommy points out.

The ab­sence of a tele­vi­sion con­sole and all vis­i­ble traces of any au­dio­vi­sual para­pher­na­lia in the liv­ing room is in re­sponse to Tony’s re­quest to have all such equip­ment con­cealed when not in use. Tommy in­ge­niously in­te­grated the pro­jec­tor screen and sound bar within the cur­tain pel­met, while the pro­jec­tor it­self and the ca­ble tele­vi­sion boxes have been tucked in the ceil­ing space above the dry kitchen is­land. “Do­ing away with a tele­vi­sion con­sole frees up valu­able floor space in the liv­ing room, which can be put to bet­ter use, es­pe­cially when en­ter­tain­ing guests,” says Tommy.

The new dry kitchen next to the liv­ing room is en­vi­sioned as a space for pre-din­ner cock­tails or af­ter-din­ner drinks. The gen­er­ously-sized kitchen is­land – clad in dark wood lam­i­nate with gold trim and a dark grey Cae­sar­stone quartz coun­ter­top – helps an­chor the open­con­cept space.

The din­ing room, new study area and bal­cony are three spa­ces de­signed to flow seam­lessly as one- visu­ally, spa­tially, and also in terms of en­hanc­ing nat­u­ral crossven­ti­la­tion. The study area was de­signed around a Moooi study ta­ble and chair that Tony fell in love with dur­ing the early stages of the in­te­rior de­sign process. Says Tommy: “Those be­ing iconic pieces, I felt that

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