Stone Statement

Having built a career out of supplying natural stone slabs to architects and designers here, homeowner Francis Tay decided to turn his love for the material into the highlight of his new home. Isabelle Tow drops in to find out more from the man himself.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel


Silver travertine from Siena, Italy, is used for the TV wall and console countertop. 

My Reading Room


A concealed door was added to close the living room off from the foyer area, lending more privacy to the interiors. Cove lights were added under the mirrored shoe cabinets to illuminate the space. 

My Reading Room


The owners’ master bathroom features yet another stone centrepiece: a classic travertine washbasin. Set on a Zimbabwe granite countertop, the basin was carved from a travertine block and resin-filled to make it watertight. 

My Reading Room


Even some loose furniture pieces are made from stone as well. This Marmeria modular bookshelf from Luce di Carrara is made from statuario altissimo marble. 

My Reading Room


Built-in furniture are usually customised to fit and fill the exact dimensions of a given space, but the Tays’ bookshelf takes up only a section of the wall, giving the living room a less busy look.

A couple, their one-year-old son and helper
HOME Five-room HDBapartment in Punggol
SIZE 1,200sqf
Arabescato, statuario, serpeggiante. These complex Italian terms are the names of some of the sumptuous types of marble that feature in this HDB home in Punggol. These upmarket stone slabs, usually reserved for use in the developments of high-end commercial and residential projects because of their cost, have become the centre of attraction in this beautiful home belonging to Francis Tay. As the owner of Stile Boutique, Francis has rare access to some of the best marble slabs in the industry, some of which have ended up in this resale flat.
After making changes to the layout to return it the original configuration, Francis – who helmed the contractor works – and his wife, Pristine, engaged the help of Barry Lim of interior design studio W5A to beautify the place. The owners were partial to a modern contemporary aesthetic, and Barry wanted to transform the home such that it wouldn’t resemble a HDB flat. This effect was achieved by closing off spaces to create greater privacy and using a duskier shade of neutrals for a restful vibe. 
My Reading Room
My Reading Room


Statuario marble was chosen for the walls of the master bedroom, in order to contrast with the warm parquet floors.