Deep, monochrome shades dominate this luxurious apartment, with bold wallpapers for an offbeat tone. Jacqueline Tan discovers the whimsical details in the midst of luxury.
The sprawling interior sports a monochromatic palette, with customised furniture – from the sofa and shelves to the dining table. The original marble flooring was left intact, lending the apartment a cool yet nostalgic feel.
WHO LIVES HERE
An American expat couple with three children, as tenants HOME A three-bedroom apartment at Four Seasons Park SIZE 2,261sqf
When the owner of this luxurious condominium unit bought the apartment, his intention was for it to be a weekend retreat. And when it came to the renovation, not only was budget not an issue, Teo Chen Hian, a director with the Tong Eng Group of companies, left the planning, design and choice of furnishings entirely to Alvin Kwan, creative director of AKD3SIGN.
His only request was for a strong, masculine colour palette – the rest was entrusted to Alvin, right down to the display of his personal collection of artworks and choice of bed linen. “The owner gave me free rein, and that gave me room to ‘experiment’ with different elements and textures,” says Alvin. “I decided to play around with wallpapers for the rooms, not the conventional sort but something bolder, unexpected and even fun.”
Originally a four-bedder, the apartment was reconfigured into a three-bedder, with two of the rooms merged to form a junior suite – a perfect arrangement for the tenants, an American couple and their three children. A second (and smaller) living area just outside the bedrooms serves as the “family room” – its original parquet flooring had been painstakingly stained black, in contrast with the polished marble flooring in the front part of the home.
To inject the different rooms with a unique feel and atmosphere, Alvin decorated the walls with wallpapers that were either textured or covered with whimsical motifs such as tree trunks, birds and animals – all from premium wallpaper brands in the UK.
“The designs I chose were so unconventional that the wallpaper installer commented that I’m one of the few interior designers who dare to be adventurous in my selection,” he says with a smile. “Those quirky designs add an element of ‘fun’, amid the more sombre colours that dominate the living and dining areas.”
The original marble flooring that spanned the living and dining areas was retained for a touch of old-world charm and elegance. “I always try to retain something nice about a house or apartment. I feel that the marble flooring has a timeless appeal and sophistication, so why not keep it?” says Alvin. While the budget was not a concern, that decision helped to save on renovation costs, which came up to around $400,000 (including furnishings).
Alvin also experimented with modular designs for the sofa set, TV console and display shelves. Every sofa unit and side table has been customised so that they can be moved around to create different looks, depending on the mood or occasion, yet still fit one another. The customised TV console employs a cuttingedge German system that has interchangeable panels and movable doors, in order to create a unique pattern. As for the metal shelves with wood panels featuring horizontal grain, they can also be slid out for a different look.
The kitchen also underwent a makeover, where the wall separating the laundry “backyard” from the kitchen area was torn down to give the impression of a single space.
“Since the laundry can be done in air-conditioned comfort, it doesn’t need a separate space, as long as the washing machine and dryer are hidden when not in use,” says Alvin. Additional storage cabinets were also incorporated in the renovated kitchen, including a mini countertop with bar stools to serve as a cosy area for a quick breakfast.
Sophistication and luxury may seem effortless for a sprawling apartment like this one, but for added character and charm, it’s the little details that count.
The attentiongrabbing wallpaper makes for a great conversation starter. A treasured painting from the landlord’s personal art collection decorates another wall; Alvin was tasked with displaying the artworks.
These metal and wood shelves were designed such that the component modules can be slid out or separated for different looks.
The customised TV console employs a cutting-edge German system with interchangeable panels and movable doors – just one of the outstanding modular designs incorporated in this home.
In a refreshing break from the greys and earthy tones in the living room, Alvin played with different motifs and textured wallpapers for the bedrooms.
The kitchen has plenty of storage space for crockery and utensils, and also features a cabinet specially made to conceal the washing machine.
Wood accents add a touch of warmth in the cooking space. The bar counter comes with a wooden side table for a quick breakfast in the kitchen.
THE KITCHEN ALSO UNDERWENT A MAKEOVER, WHERE THE WALL SEPARATING THE LAUNDRY “BACKYARD” FROM THE KITCHEN AREA WAS TORN DOWN TO GIVE THE IMPRESSION OF A SINGLE SPACE.
A sleek fourposter bed was specially customised for the master bedroom, with the forest-themed wallpaper lending a dose of fairy-tale charm to the sanctuary.
The wardrobe in dark wood laminate has customised slim door handles for a sleek look.
Clad in marble, the spacious master bathroom exudes elegance.
PHOTOGRAPHY FRENCHESCAR LIM ART DIRECTION NONIE CHEN