Design TeamLim Cheng Kooi
Site Area1203 m2
From the architect. The design for the house commenced in the year 2009 and was completed in May 2011. Sited within a leafy up-market housing estate, it sits on a 1200 m2 linear plot of land that was originally part of a larger estate before sub-division. The house is hence hidden away from the main road and approached via a short access road that is shared by the immediate neighbor.
Designed for a family of 5 with occasional visits from the grandparents, the client gave the architect much freedom for the design except for two requests: to provide for a full lap pool and to build adequately within a budget, rather than maxing out the build-able area. The main wing, a linear block houses predominantly the main circulation and service areas such as foyer, dining, kitchens, and yard at the ground level and more private spaces such as the Master bedroom, daughter’s bedrooms and family seating room on the upper level.
The block terminating the main circulation spine is a volumetric living room space with the master bedroom’s study over looking from above. The third annex block houses private spaces such as the family entertainment and study at the ground level and the sons’ bedrooms on the upper level. Entry is from a large column free car porch into a semi-outdoor entrance porch before turning into a central foyer that forms the main circulation spine leading to all the main living spaces.
On the first storey, the house is to be read in a linear fashion with the main corridor acting as a central guiding axis. The rest of the spaces is plugged and arranged along it, revealing a relatively intimate space, the living room at the end of it. The living room is also located strategically towards the end of this linearity to capitalise on the good views along the northeast of the rear boundary.
The sequence of spaces unfolds along this corridor: entertainment room, staircase to second storey, living and dining room whilst the service area and guest room are placed behind these public spaces. This clear segregation of spaces along the corridor ensures straightforward circulation beyond communal spaces. The volume is punctured between blocks on both levels, allowing natural light and cross ventilation within the inner spaces.
Internal spaces between blocks are interconnected with stone/timber slat bridges and glass enclosure. Courtyard is created in between blocks and it provides an intimate entertainment area for family and friends to socialise and also to relax by the side of a long infinity lap pool. It is also linked with a wooden deck to the rear lawn and allows continuity of outdoor spaces.
The second request instead provided opportunities for a modest expense of landscaping around the house. Each part of the house, especially the rooms and communal spaces open out to the greenery and surrounding vistas. The inclusion of a large pivoting screen at the living room further blurs the boundaries between internal spaces and the landscape, thereby engaging the surrounding green whilst protecting the owners’ privacy. Furthermore, the lap pool continues and evolves to become a water feature, which injects and weaves itself into the building volume.