We talk to VERA M about her life in Singapore and why she chose to live in this high-rise condo in Novena over her own place nearby.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your Singapore journey?
I was born in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, in an Italian family. It’s an area that is really blessed with the nature, amazing beaches, mountains and waterfalls.
We moved to Singapore for my husband’s job and have now been living here for 20 years; we’ve made it our home base. I believe that a place you cherish becomes your own country and we are very proud to say that we are PRs here. Asia has been my home for nearly 30 years. I’m a PR in Japan, too, so I have the privilege to say that those two countries are my adoptive home countries.
Who are you here with and what do you do in Singapore?
I live in our high-rise condo in Singapore with my husband and my dog Sparky. Our children are grown up and live overseas – our daughter in England and our son in Japan. We have a part-time helper who is great!
I’m a language teacher and conduct culinary classes – I teach French cuisine at the Japanese Association of Singapore. All my classes are conducted in Japanese as I can speak it fluently and it’s one of the languages I teach.
Where do you live on the island?
We’ve been living in Novena for the past 10 years – near Thomson Medical Centre. It’s very convenient, with gyms, supermarkets and embassies. My own embassy is also located here – I can walk to it from my condo in Novena.
Currently, we’re renting a four-bedroom apartment at The Arte. The feature we love the most is the spacious terrace. I love gardening and I’m growing lots of plants, herbs and even mini tomatoes from seeds from Urban Garden. From our high-rise condo, we have a breathtaking view – we can even see the fireworks at Marina Bay! The terrace and the view were the two main reasons we moved to this high-rise condo in Singapore from our own place. We own a property quite near here, also in Novena, but it doesn’t have a balcony, or this view; and although we hesitated at first to move out from our own place – it was a big decision – we’re really happy we did.
Favourite place in your condo in Novena?
My favourite room in this apartment is the kitchen, which is bright and functional. I like the concept of having a glass panel instead of a wall. When I’m holding a cooking class at home, the participants can see from the living room through the glass wall.
The terrace is obviously another corner that I enjoy a lot. Even though we live on the 25th floor of our high-rise condo, it feels like we have a garden, and most of the time we have dinner outside. When we entertain friends, we usually start by having aperitifs there. Being up so high, it’s nearly always breezy.
What’s your home décor style?
As I’ve been living in Asia almost all my life, I like to combine some Western classic furniture with some Asian pieces. We have a few items from Japan and Korea, and the rest is a mix of American and European-style furniture. Some of the things I brought from Japan; others I got here from Taylor B, Da Vinci Lifestyle and a few lamps, paintings and décor items from Crate & Barrel.
Which items in your home are the most important to you?
I’m very sentimental about the solid silver cutlery set that I got from my mother. It’s a 105-piece family heirloom – I’ve got to look after it! Also, my collection of silver Christofle Museum replicas – I was able to collect all the pieces in the collection and I would never be without them.
Got a last word on Singapore life?
I’m just very grateful to be living here!
Taylor B | taylorbdesign.com
Da Vinci Lifestyle | davincilifestyle.com
Crate & Barrel | crateandbarrel.com.sg
Urban Garden | urbanlandscape.com.sg
Japanese Association | jas-org-sg
This article first appeared in the November 2022 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!
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