Playfully Eclectic Furnishing Inspired By Mid-Century Modern Aesthetics
Home & Decor Singapore|October 2021
This rare corner conservation HDB flat in Tiong Bahru features clever spatial strategy and playfully eclectic furnishing inspired by mid-century modern aesthetics. ASIH JENIE takes a tour.
Asih Jenie
It is extremely rare to find a corner unit flat for sale in Tiong Bahru. The nice ones are either for rental only or occupied by owners,” shares Balazs Molnar. The Hungarian expat and his Taiwanese wife Cynthia Wei, who is a Singaporean PR, knew this well, having lived in a rental unit near the Tiong Bahru Market for two years. They had been looking to buy their own home in the area for a year before finding a gem – a sun-drenched, 1,195-sq-ft, three-bedroom corner unit in Yong Siak Street, right at the heart of the historic neighbourhood. Balazs and Cynthia initially had a reservation because the flat had only 46 years left on the lease, but its projected six per cent yield sealed the deal.

The couple, both in their 30s and work in the tech industry, had a clear idea of what they wanted for their home. On top of their wishlist were an open concept living space, a functional kitchen, and a multipurpose room that could double as a workspace, as Balazs runs a multinational company from home. Helping them translate the vision from paper to reality was interior designer Alex Kwan, whose practice, Museum Homes, is located in the same building.

The first step taken to renovate the home was reconfiguring the layout to create the open-plan common space. The kitchen, which was originally located at the back of the rectangular floor plan, was brought to the front to be adjacent to the dining-living area, while the backroom was transformed into a multipurpose room. This requires some clever rewiring of the pipes. “We wanted the kitchen to be a functional part of the living space,” shares Balazs.

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