[Copyediting for website of residential development]
Client: Vista Realty
Website designer: Hanson Ho, H55
Architect: ipli Architects
“Coming home to a sanctuary means coming home to a place where family feels protected.” – Yip Yuen Hong, architect
19, 23, 18 and 14 King Albert Park is a story about the creation of an inner sanctum sheltered from the cacophony of the outside world, where individuality is valued alongside togetherness. Like in a family, a genuine sense of belonging is what provides the welcome home.
“Architecture is striving for timelessness, and for timelessness to occur, it has to be a simple form: a very big roof encompassing a very sheltered space inside, so the actual habitable spaces are recessed to protect the family from the sun, rain and the world outside.”
Four Good Class Bungalows sit on an undulating landscape, each with a distinct encasing character—concrete, copper, brass, aluminium—but all sharing the same DNA. Designed by Yip Yuen Hong of ipli Architects, this DNA is woven of a back-to-basics way of engagement with nature: a large, pitched roof and generous verandahs, evoking old-world charm and relaxed grandeur, as well as the comforts of tropical living inspired by traditional black-and-white colonial bungalows. This distinct roof form is reminiscent of many things: the iconoclastic regional architecture of the South-East Asian region, the naïve sketch of a house drawn by a child—things that embody the idea of a home in the most universal understanding but also with its roots in a time and place.
“An architect’s stroke should be humble because architecture is for people; it’s not for myself. I contribute to the overall sense of space, contact with the surrounding area and set a somewhat blank stage for the families to make their lives in…it shouldn’t need a lot of effort in the architecture to live comfortably.”
The rawness of the houses’ shells reflects the architect’s penchant for authenticity and for a symbiosis of architecture and landscape. The gentle weathering of the facades is also a poetic parallel to both the non-static dimension of nature, as well as the changing seasons and structure of a family. The common spaces of each house expand into the green visually and physically, while the more private zones are sheltered retreats that are also privy to more intimate interactions with the vicissitudes of the natural elements—wind, sun, rain—through internal courtyards, screens and layered composition of openings.
Missing are the complicated acrobatics or inappropriateness of glass palaces that are in vogue. Instead here, spaces of belonging, protection and simplicity are crafted to place the rhythms of daily family life at the fore.
“ The development is like a community of individual characters with no strong definable boundaries, allowing the families to intermingle…it’s like four houses are sitting in a very big garden.”
The four houses look into a large driveway-cum-community ground where children can engage together in play or adults can commune for evening saunter. Hedges and water bodies, rather than hard walls, separate each house, while gates allow for cross-access.
Chang Huai-yan of landscape architecture firm Salad Dressing lends his magic in weaving together a green tapestry of varied textures and forms. The garden of each house is designed to match the unique materiality of the architecture but they all blend together seamlessly as a whole. Like the honest yet refined architecture, the landscape is sculptured like an orchestrated jungle with a deliberate biodiversity and the flavour of the distinct regional seasons.
This boutique development is initiated and executed by Vista Realty, a privately run property investment firm focussed on providing quality living experiences. For more information, contact Sherlene: firstname.lastname@example.org, +65 6381 9717.
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