The interior stylists and designers at Arete Culture have worked with this one client on three different Singapore homes. We take a look at their most recently completed project of the three, a house on Royal Road. As with his previous homes, the client wanted Arete Culture to manage the entire project. He gave them complete creative freedom to do what was needed for home decor and renovation m– something he’s done from the first time they worked together.
This project which was an old black-and-white house on Royal Road in Alexandra Park, took three months to complete, including the renovation work. Because the client was living in the space for the duration of the renovation (even hosting guests during this time), it was important to always have one bathroom functional at all times!
It’s perhaps a little unusual to undertake full renovation work in a black-and-white property, but the home was not functional for entertaining – the amenities were old and there was no storage.
Key to the interior design transformation was the need to adhere to SLA (Singapore Land Authority) guidelines. This meant that things like laminates and tiles, as well as the overall colour palette, had to conform to the black-and-white aesthetic. Arete Culture was more than happy to do this to respect the heritage of the property; they focused on creating functional storage instead.
Inside the home
Since rooms in these Singapore homes, the historic black-and-whites, are only fitted with a simple overhead bulb, Arete Culture customised lampshades for the entire home to make the space warmer.
The client is an avid collector of art – paintings, sculptures, antique furniture and more. It’s a collection that grows with every home that Arete Culture works on! Like in the previous two properties, the priority was to show off these artworks while keeping the feel of the home both modern and inviting. They placed his most important collectibles downstairs in the communal entertaining areas.
Deciding on art placement – which pieces suit which space – always takes a considerable length of time. But it’s an important part of any interior stylist’s role in a makeover. And, of course, you have to get them hung well!
The finishing touches
The client’s previous Singapore home was a new property done in a black-and-white style; it had more built-in storage and a more straightforward layout. While most of the furniture was brought over from that home, Arete also had to round out the selection with additional standalone display cabinets. They also brought in more mirror panels to bridge the originally disjointed design flow between rooms.
A word from the client
I have worked happily with Caroline and Jeannette at Arete Culture on my previous Singapore homes and so they were the obvious choice for my move to this black-and-white house. They understand my tastes and are able to blend my eclectic collection of art and antiques with modern pieces. They project-managed the new kitchens and bathrooms from design to completion, which saved me a lot of time and effort. I would definitely recommend them to others.
Atelier by Arete
20 Depot Lane, #01-01/02 | 9640 3829
#06-01 Tan Boon Liat Building | 9640 3829
This article first appeared in the August 2022 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!