After years of living in the heart of Hong Kong, relocating to Singapore gave JC FULFORD-SMITH and family the chance to enjoy more space and some greenery! They chose the Regency Park condo in River Valley with its lovely big balconies!
HOME FACT FILE
Size & Type: 2,300-square-foot condo apartment with balcony
Location: Regency Park, Nathan Road, River Valley
Occupants: JC and husband Tom, son Lukas (11), daughter Lila (9), helper Lyn, and Monty the dog
Tell us a bit about yourself and why you’re living in Singapore.
I’m from Los Angeles and was formerly a hospitality designer. I moved to Hong Kong in 2007 to work on hotels in Macau and the region, including Marina Bay Sands. I met my British husband Tom up in Hong Kong and we lived there for 10 years and had Lukas and Lila there.
Tom’s company then brought us to Singapore in 2017. As an interior designer, I’ve always loved design and art, and I began a small business, Lot33art, sourcing decorative art. I’m currently finishing a master’s degree in real estate investment and finance as part of a career transition post-COVID.
What kind of home were you looking for?
Coming from Hong Kong, we were looking for more space but with young kids we were still attracted to condo living. We’re a social family and condo living provided the option for being in a wonderful area with fantastic amenities. A balcony and central location were at the top of our list. We were used to city living in Hong Kong and being 10 minutes from everything like work, restaurants and green spaces; the River Valley area ticked all our boxes.
Why Regency Park Condo?
We had friends who lived in Regency Park and once we visited we fell in love with the big balconies and lush landscaping. It’s a large property that gives the children plenty of space to play with condo friends, and there’s a wonderful community here.
How would you define your interior style?
I would call it “warm modern”. I love clean lines and contemporary furniture but I like to create a comfortable and lived-in look and feel. Often contemporary interiors can be cold or uninviting; I try to counteract that with comfy fabrics and colour.
Where do you most enjoy spending time at home?
My favourite space would be the balcony off our living room. Being on a low floor provides us with a beautifully lush background, so I kept the colours very neutral in order to highlight the vibrant green surroundings. We often dine out there or entertain – it’s really an extension of our living room.
Where do you source your furniture and décor from?
As a designer, I’m lucky to have had access to furniture companies and factories in Hong Kong and mainland China. I purchased most of our furniture before we moved to Singapore or had it custom-made. And I source and curate the artworks myself through the network of artists I’ve used for Lot33art.
Tell us a bit more about that.
My art-sourcing business provides and helps curate decorative art. Decorative art is meant to be a decorative element and not necessarily an investment. The beauty of affordable decorative arts – as opposed to very expensive pieces – is you can easily replace them or switch them out. When I was working in interior design, I saw so many clients who had lost an expensive artwork in an overseas move. This was part of the reason why I thought affordable hand-painted art could be a much-needed resource for expats. My large-scale hand-painted pieces can be customised in size, colour and style while still being affordably priced – most of them are under $800.
Favourite thing about living in Singapore and the region?
I love tropical living (even though sometimes it’s also what I hate most!). I do love the random heavy rain that disappears as quickly as it appears. The tropical vibe here impacts how we dress, eat and live.
What’s your advice to newcomers to Singapore?
Don’t compare it to previous places you’ve lived. It’s unique, so just appreciate it for what it is!
Cafés in Singapore
“I love a good coffee, and Little Farms at River Valley and Common Man at Robertson Quay are two of my faves for coffee and a healthy breakfast. Carrotsticks & Cravings is up there too!”
Lunches in Singapore
“I enjoy alfresco dining so I often eat at Robertson Quay restaurants such as Público, Privé and Super Loco.”
Restaurants in Singapore
“My favourite is Koma; it has sushi, cocktails and great design – some of my favourite things. Being of Mexican descent, I also love
Mexican food; La Mexicana at Chjimes is great for take-out, and for dining in I like Nixta.”
Bars and Nights Out
“For a fun girls’ night out, Employees Only, Barbary Coast Ballroom and Siri House are some of my faves.”
This article first appeared in the March 2022 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!