Built in the 1930s, Tiong Bahru Estate is one of the oldest housing estates in Singapore. It was the first project undertaken by the Singapore Improvement Trust (SIT), a government body administered by the British colonial authority that laid the design foundation of what was then the choice place of living for the upper class and also the place where the rich and powerful kept their mistresses. It is apparent that a lot of effort was put into designing the estate with a series of flats that are visually pleasing. The flats in the Tiong Bahru Estate contrasted markedly with those of the much later post-war mass housing programs undertaken by SIT’s successor, the Housing and Development Board. In contrast with the aesthetic art deco theme of the Tiong Bahru flats, the flats built by the Housing Board in the 1950s and 1960s are starkly utilitarian in appearance and design; where flats are almost identical in their two-dimensional “matchbox” style.
Atelier M – a stunning boutique interior architecture home studio that managed to be tucked quietly into the heart of Tiong Bahru Estate. Over the last year, S. Chen + J. Choi, co-owners of the studio, partnered together to more adequately reflects their distinct vision for this build, and the result is an ideal balance of comfort and contemporary class. As cozy and chic as the 2 living areas are, a glimpse at the common areas from a custom doorway into the reception and studio space to the sunlit kitchen through a pallet of recycled wooden trellis reflects the attention to details this project exudes.
Looking at the rear of the house through a museum-like corridor that separates the front and the back, the practice has accurately conveyed the grand, yet warm contemporary aesthetics of the project brief.