Archive for the ‘Homes’ Category


Singapore’s Next Big Hot Spot : Tiong Bahru

September 1, 2007


Extreme Makeover

August 4, 2007
BEFORE ????????????

AFTER ????????????

In case you are wondering if someone in Tiong Bahru has done an Extreme Makeover – Home Edition……sorry to disappoint.
The 1st picture was taken in the Tiong Bahru Estate while the nicer one was taken at the SMU Residences @ Prinsep .

If you intend to buy a ground floor unit over at the Tiong Bahru Estate, perhaps you can take a cue from these trendy hostels.

Tiong Bahru Pre War Conserved Flats

July 5, 2007

Tiong Bahru Pre War Ground Floor

Home & Decor Magazine (June 2007 Edition)

Media professional FenFei’s new home is chock-full of personality. The pre-war abode in Tiong Bahru estate has bits of history mixed in with film and travel memorabilia, not to mention a neighbourhood visitor in the form of an insistent cat.
“I used to live in a similar type of home before I got married, and I like how the pre-war houses have this raw and minimal type of design,” Fenfei narrates. The bare, industrial feel is also a good canvas for her colourful furnishings, which include art film posters, retro furniture and quirky accessories.
Fenfei and her husband moved in just a few months ago, after a three-month renovation by interior designer Kelvin Giam of Intent. “We were shopping for a designer because my previous designer had become too expensive,” Fenfei laughs. The search ended with a copy of Home & Decor and one appointment. “Kelvin’s project was featured in one issue. We liked his work, so we gave him a call. We decided to work with him as we established an instant connection in our first meeting.”

Paying homage to the 1930s housing estate, Kelvin’s interior renovation incorporated a clear visual differentiation between the old and the new. The original, load-bearing walls were given a smooth finish, while the new walls have rough surfaces. The coarsely finished walls with their curved windows and arched doorways are reminiscent of adobe homes in the Spanish Mission style of architecture, but a glossy white coating keeps it looking industrial. Textured floors demarcate some spaces like the kitchen, dining and living area from the hallway to the bedrooms, so there are fewer walls and hence more light and ventilation to go around. Interior windows were cut into the walls too, making the cavernous house brighter despite the brick, cement screed and bare concrete finishes. The finishing and lighting fixtures are mostly from Fenfei’s previous house and her existing collection. “I asked Kelvin to keep it spare because we were bringing in lot of our of things.”

Feifei says there is a lot of room for growth in the 1,100 sqft residence – a spare bedroom should the in-laws choose to move in and a study area that can be turned into another bedroom “when we decide to have children” are already in place. With the fun vintage pieces and the subway station look, it’s easy to imagine children having a blast growing up in and running around this house. Of course, the stark white walls would be a convenient and tempting canvas for a child’s crayon doodles, but they would simply add even more character to Fenfei’s home.

Interior Design Services by Kelvin Giam of Intent
(HP : 9022-0690)

To own a home in the Tiong Bahru Estate, please contact Alvin Yeo at or Call (+65) 9100-0001


Hip Replacement

March 25, 2007

The Sunday Times (Life!)
March 24, 2007

Hip replacement
By Tay Suan Chiang

IT MAY have had a $50,000 makeover to give its interior the sleek lines of contemporary living, but this 60-year-old flat at Tiong Bahru has retained its heart – in more ways than one.

Some original touches have been kept, such as the cabinet doors in the kitchen, which were sanded down and repainted.

There’s also an original built-in mosaic window seat that runs along the length of the living room. The owners and friends enjoy watching the bustle of trendy Tiong Bahru from it.

The owners, a young working couple who declined to be named, faced quite a challenge when they bought the flat.

It wasn’t fit to be lived in, they recall of the 925 sq ft flat bought 11/2 years ago

Indeed, the four flights of stairs leading up to it still look every one of their six decades in age.

But step inside, and shabby becomes chic.

While the facade is old, the owners, who moved in last month, said: ‘We decided that retro wasn’t us and we wouldn’t be able to live with it in the long run.’

Major work had to be done, the first of which was the flooring. The flat’s old tiles were removed and in their place is cement flooring. As well as giving an edgy, urban vibe, the owners say it is more affordable and easy to maintain.

Small but cosy

The flat also had two bedrooms at the front that have been converted into a bigger living area. A third bedroom nearer the entrance of the flat is now the couple’s bedroom.

While the pair love the flat’s convenient location, they say there is a downside to living there.

‘Space is a real challenge; it is just right for two of us and our small dog,’ he says.

So when it comes to buying items for the home, they have to think twice. ‘Everything must be small and compact.’

SPACED OUT: To enlarge the living and dining areas, two bedrooms at the front of the house were knocked down. — LIM WUI LIANG

DOUBLE DUTY: The home owners opted for a horizontal commercial fridge which could also act as a counter top. — LIM WUI LIANG

AS GOOD AS NEW: An old-style calendar hangs from a restored door of a kitchen cabinet. — LIM WUI LIANG

TREASURE: A mosaic-tiled seat by the living room window was retained in its original condition, offering visitors a bird’s eye view of Tiong Bahru. — LIM WUI LIANG

JUNK FIND: The grilles with heart-shaped patterns were taken from the home owner’s former neighbour in Braddell who had thrown it out during his renovation works. — LIM WUI LIANG

CLEAN LOOK: White is the predominant colour scheme in the house. — LIM WUI LIANG


Renovating my Tiong Bahru SIT flat

August 1, 2006
My wife was tasked to handle all aspect of the renovation. She spotted something she liked in SQUAREOOMS and contacted the interior designer. Jolsen Tan was the one who answered the call and we eventually met up at his office in the charming Arab Street Area.

The following was his proposal
The Proposal

Living Area
Area outside the toilet

Kitchen Area


The final result was quite close to the pictures except for the bedroom, we made him go back to the drawing board a few times. I’m sure Jolson has his own blog to complain about what a difficult customer we were. HaHa.

On a serious note, if you are looking for someone with the experience to renovate a Tiong Bahru SIT flat, I highly recommend Mr Jolsen Tan of Linewerkz. he can be contacted at 98505166.

Where to buy the floor plans?

June 10, 2006

You can purchase the floor plans with HDB. It will cost you $5 per floor plan.

You can also go to Toa Payoh HDB Hub Level 3 to buy if you need it urgently.

Alternatively, you can go online and purchase it at