Stepping back in time

Stepping back in time

STEPPING into this apartment along Zion Road feels like going back in time. Rather than shiny marble flooring which is the norm now, the floor is made of cement.

And in place of a concrete roof, polycarbonate sheets, similar to those found in greenhouses, protect the home from the elements. On a clear afternoon, sunlight streams into the kitchen.

When it rains, the pitter-patter of rain comes down hard on the plastic sheets, creating a musical of sorts. Thankfully, there are no leaky ceilings.

The apartment, along with the other walk-up units on the same stretch at Zion Road, was built in 1963, and the building facade certainly looks its age.

But its retro charm got the attention of Chai Yee Wei and his wife, Diane Chan. This is their first marital home.

The couple were keen on living in an old shophouse, and went to view a few in Tiong Bahru. Sadly, they did not find their dream home there, as the leases on those apartments are less than 50 years, with a high mortgage to boot.

As luck would have it, they came across this 1,150 sq ft apartment at Zion Road, which was the former studio of photographer Jason Wee.

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