Cover The entrance of a family home with interiors crafted by Singapore-based firm Designshop

This house in Singapore balances privacy and openness for a wellness-minded family

With more time being spent at home, it’s no surprise to hear that more homeowners are giving priority to wellness-inspired amenities in their abode. This centrally-located family house in Singapore certainly strives towards the goal of living mindfully with its sleek interior and spaces that maximise the connection between the indoors and outdoors. 

The work of Singapore-based studio Designshop, the design of this home was led by director Samuel Lee; founded in 1987, Designshop is helmed by managing director and architect Joy Lim, and offers the full set of services from architectural design to interior design and landscaping.

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The owner, who is a respiratory physician, also emphasised to the team that the 7,039 sq ft house should become “a place of respite” and also ensure a space where any member of the family can safely self-quarantine at home should the need arise during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Aside from making the most of the uniquely-shaped site, the team at Designshop also took into consideration the orientation of the house to bring in as much natural light and ventilation into the interior. The client’s love of old black-and-white houses in Singapore also played a strong part in shaping the design aesthetic, with the interior taking inspiration from the colonial styles but with modern subtleties. 
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Lush greenery used abundantly on the exterior various levels of the house help soften the strong geometry of the house. The large windows ensure that the family could enjoy views of the greenery outdoors while enjoying the indoor comforts of their home.

“The greenery plays an important role in creating a calming and restful atmosphere for the family,” explains Lee, whose team had worked with Hawaii Landscape to design the landscaped terraces for this house. “Darker materials and finishes were also adopted to draw emphasis to the outdoors and greenery, and add warmth and cosiness.”

The team also selected light fittings from Light Basic Studio, and ceramic and stone tiles from Hafary and Micron Asia to complement the modern minimalist scheme, while the ironmongery and joinery are respectively the work of Kawajun Interior Hardware and 3H Decor.

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With privacy and a sense of respite being at the forefront of the client’s considerations, Designshop paid special attention to create a private haven for the owner and the family to gather on the first two floors where the communal areas are located. This was achieved by creating a double-volume sheltered patio hidden from the road to connect the family areas and create a private space hidden from the road. 

“The greenery plays an important role in creating a calming and restful atmosphere for the family.” 
Samuel Lee, director of Designshop

The range of communal spaces facilitated family bonding with a variety of activity spaces that the owners could enjoy in close proximity to one another. The piano room, home gym, study and lounge area enabled the family to participate in their daily activities and hobbies and spend time with each other, while the sheltered patio has become the family’s favourite spot for informal gatherings and meals together. 

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To take advantage of the panoramic views from the upper levels, where the family-only spaces were located, Designshop opened up the room towards the road, forming outdoor terraces. In the event of needed privacy, the team incorporated movable aluminum screens to provide shade for these rooms on those extra sunny days. 

One of the most interesting features of the home is the attic, which arose as a result of safety considerations during the Covid-19 pandemic.

To ensure that the owner’s family was kept safe in the event of self-quarantining, the attic was designed as an autonomous space. It is features a bedroom with an ensuite bathroom. Equipped with all the necessary facilities and plenty of natural ventilation, the space became a self-isolating yet welcoming and naturally ventilated space that promotes physical and mental well-being for a healthy recovery while in quarantine. 

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