A vertical challenge

Plenty of reshaping was needed to tailor this home's slender layout to the growing family.

Who: A family of five

Home: A four-storey terrace unit on the fringes of Orchard Road

Size: 2,900sqf

Having lived in many countries while amassing a collection of international furniture and art, this couple are truly global citizens at heart.

When they approached interior design firm Project File's director, Alan Choo, the seasoned designer knew that his job was simply to provide the fundamentals for the sophisticated pair and their young children.

Couple spends $260,000 on renovating 4-storey Orchard Road terrace

  • The second storey used to be taken up entirely by a master bedroom suite, but it’s now split up into a family room and a smaller bedroom for one child.
  • To combat the limited space, a sink was incorporated into the breakfast counter, and cups and stemware are stored in overhead shelves to avoid tabletop clutter.
  • The ground floor is anchored by a relaxed-looking living room, which flows seamlessly into the open-plan, custom-made dining area and kitchen. “They didn’t care much for the luxurious look,” designer Alan explains of the homeowners’ choice to replace the home’s original marble flooring with wood-lookalike vinyl floors.
  • The soothing mix of welcoming furniture and vibrant art and decor accessories was put together by the missus. “She has a really good eye for styling,” Alan remarks.
  • An elongated study area has been carved out between two bedrooms on the third floor. The rugged exposed brick treatment for this wall is a surprising feature that breaks up the monotony of the home’s many white walls.
  • Besides mounting their precious collection of artworks on the wall, the proud parents also allocated some wall space for their children’s drawings.
  • Previously a small bedroom with a double-height celling, the fourth floor is now divided into two cosy floors. The designer took a risk by knocking through one of the walls, and uncovered a hidden void (currently occupied by the stairway) that can be turned into usable space.
  • The children’s bedrooms keep to the abode’s white theme, but are differentiated with quaint and colourful accessories with a nostalgic feel.
  • A resort-like ambience is created for the washroom attached to the master bedroom suite by cladding it in calming colours.
  • This newly uncovered space now functions as a private study, and leads the way up nicely to the couple’s private hideaway.

That included reconfiguring most of the home's narrow layout to cater to each family member's needs, building plenty of storage compartments, and translating the couple's preference for neutral colours into the refurbished space.

"Besides the use of white and grey walls, and wooden tones, they left much of the space planning to me," recalls Alan, who was grateful for the trust the homeowners placed in him throughout the five-month-long renovation, which cost $260,000.

WHERE TO GO

Project File, TEL: 6295-5400

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