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EDITOR’SNOTE I have a confession to make. No, it’s nothing saucy – unfortunately! It’s just that it tookme 22 years (and a travel ban) to visit Pulau Ubin. Years ago, I went to Lazarus, St Johns and Kusu Islands by boat, but I always thought Ubin was a bit of a mission – there were lots of stories of long queues for ferries. Which reminds me, I was telling someone the other day that when we first arrived here, our only way to get on and off Sentosa was by a small ferry. The cable cars were there back then, but they were too expensive for us! You couldn’t drive over and there was no monorail. I still remember the stress of trying to get my double buggy with two sandy, sweaty and tired toddlers on to those last ferries. You didn’t want to get left behind because there wasn’t much there apart from the two (unaffordable to us) four-star hotels. Anyway, I have digressed. Pulau Ubin was fab – so nice to see another side of Singapore, and the boat ride made it feel like we had travelled! We took bikes with us, but it’s probably easier to rent them there. There are easy routes that meander past rivers and kampong houses. And then there are muddy tracks through the jungle where you could easily hit a tree root and fall off… Luckily, I don’t think anyone saw me – the others were well ahead! My bruised legs and pride have now both healed, and I’m ready to go again. Maybe I’ll walk this time! Seriously, if you haven’t been to Ubin, it’s a nice morning walk or bike ride, and then you can have a cheap meal before getting back on the ferry. Go early on the weekends though, and watch out for Singapore school holiday periods too and you should miss most of the crowds. Hope you’re finding cool places to walk and cycle. We’ve got articles with info on trails and hikes online if you need somewhere new to try. And in this month’s mag there are ideas for staycations; we promise you’ll feel like you’ve been on holiday! So, have a happy “holiday” – and a fun Halloween!
REBECCA BISSET Editor-in-Chief
OUR NEW CITY GUIDE IS OUT NOW! Get it at expatliving.sg/shop
A quarry at Pulau Ubin
Editor-in-Chief REBECCA BISSET Managing Editor LEANDA RATHMELL Editorial Team
HEALTH & FITNESS: AMY GREENBURG LIFE & FAMILY, TRAVEL: LINDSAY YAP WINE & DINE, HAIR & BEAUTY: ANTHIA CHNG FASHION & HOMES: REBECCA BISSET Copy Editors
SHAMUS SILLAR | JULIET KEYS Online & Digital Content MICHAELA BISSET
Production Coordinator NUR HANANI KAMAL LUDDIN Graphic Designers MICHAEL BERNABE | JEANNE WONG Marketing, Circulation & Administration ANNA TSERLINGAS | VEENA GILL | SITI SHAHIRAH KHIRUDEEN Advertising Sales KARIN GALLEY | DANIELLE ROSSETTI | LARA SAGE | JACQUI YOUNG Events & Partnerships SUSAN KNUDSEN-PICKLES IT &Web Support RENE YUTIAMPO | HANADDI REY DIAZ MAMBA Chief Operations Officer COLIN PURCHASE Contributing Writers IRINA GAZOUKINA | HARSHARAN KAUR | DEE KHANDUJA | JO UPCRAFT Contributing Photographers KATIE MARTIN-SPERRY (KATIEMSPERRYPHOTOGRAPHY.COM) CHARU SHAH (CHARUSHAHPHOTOGRAPHY.COM) KEN TAN (KENKHT@GMAIL.COM)
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NEWS 18 Calendar Updates: 20 Readers’ Letters 22 EL Forum:
Heritage home inspo 28
What’s on in the coming months
Our online antics and our upcoming events HOME&PROPERTY 26 News 28 Home Showcase: A heritage-inspired home off Holland Road 36 Asia to Africa: Furniture from around the world 39 Store Spotlight: A chat with China Collection’s Doug Lockett 42 Hosting Handbook: How to throw a Mediterranean dinner party 44 Cloud on Canvas: Meet an artist who captures the sky 46 Inside Story: Readers share their arty finds 48 Buying Guide: Awesome art for your walls 52 Stylish Safety: The fire extinguisher, reimagined! 54 Buying Guide: Storage solutions of all sizes 60 Street Talk: What it’s like living in Balmoral Park
Meet the artist 44
LIFE & FAMILY 66 News 72 Going Green: A new place to play 74 Noticeboard: Birth announcements and pet adoptions 76 Screen & Page: Top TV and book recommendations 78 Preschool Corner:
Favourite outdoor play activities for kids
82 IB Success:
One school shares its secret
84 Job Search:
A 5-step action plan for finding work 86 Digital Marketing: 88 Finding Strength: AWA takes on 2020! 90 Mental Health: Understanding emotional wellbeing
Smart and stylish storage 54
How SEO can help your business
92 Singapore Pages: Exploring the island’s past and present 95 Helping Hands: Tackling modern-day slavery
How to scratch the travel itch 124
WINE & DINE 104 News 108 Cellar Secrets: Where to shop quality wine and glassware 110 Carnivore Corner: We review three restos with great steaks 112 Butcher’s Block: Top websites for buying meat 116 Recipe Corner: Favourites to add to your repertoire TRAVEL 122 News 124 Treat Yourself: Staycation picks and promos! 130 On the Horizon: Capella opens in Bangkok 132 Hashtag Highlights:
42 Dinner party tips
The world’s most Insta-worthy spots
We share our go-to scents 152
STYLE & BEAUTY 138 Style News 140 Stylist Spotlight: A day in the life of Simonne 142 All Dolled Up: Daytime threads and sparkles 150 Beauty News 152 Our Two Scents: The EL team’s favourite fragrances 154 New in Town: A peek at a fab beauty salon 155 Hydration Boost: An anti-ageing solution 156 Tried & Tested: Skincare for your peepers 158 Erasing Eyebags: A scarless treatment HEALTH & FITNESS 166 News 170 Counselling Corner: The issues that many are facing 174 Women’s Health: Tips on keeping tip-top 179 One-Stop Wellness: Seaside Pilates and pampering REGULARS 186 Horoscopes for October 188 Puzzle Pages 190 Numbers & Websites
Be the best dressed at brunch! 142
The latest in beauty news 150
191 Advertiser List 192 Parting Shot: Racial Harmony Day
Shaws Open House (31 OCT)
During Shaws Preschool’s open house, you’ll have the chance to explore the school’s outdoor spaces, classrooms and butterfly gardens. You’ll also get to meet the teachers and learn more about the unique ShawsPlay curriculum and fun sports lessons. The school caters to Pre-Nursery to Kindergarten Two children and offers a stimulating and vibrant learning environment. Visits to their five campuses are for adults only and by appointment from 9.30am to 2pm (limited spots available). Email Dana@Shaws.com.sg or call 9789 2255 (health checks, SafeEntry and travel declaration upon arrival). shaws.com.sg ACM After Dark: Heroes and Villains (31 OCT) The Asian Civilisations Museum’s annual Halloween event is going online this year. Go on a virtual trail to learn more about heroes and villains in Asian civilisations. The programme includes craft video tutorials too. Join the fun at nhb.gov.sg/acm .
Lim Tze Peng
Lim Tze Peng’s A Century of Ink (UNTIL 27 OCT)
To celebrate his 100th birthday in September, local artist Lim Tze Peng will be having a virtual art exhibition. Separated into three virtual galleries, the exhibition will feature his earlier works on Singapore’s scenes that were painted outdoors, progressing into works painted in late 2019 to the present. A final “exhibition room” will showcase 100 works by art collectors and their greetings to Lim. View it on the Ode to Art website, odetoart.com . NTU CCA Singapore Online Benefit Art Auction (1-18 OCT) The auction aims to raise funds for current projects: NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore’s Digital Archive and a publication titled “Climates. Habitats. Environments”. Artworks featured are donated by local and international artists who have participated in the Centre’s residencies, exhibitions and other programmes. ntu.ccasingapore.org Ride for Rainbows (3-11 OCT) Organised by Club Rainbow (Singapore), this annual cycling event aims to raise funds for children with chronic and life-threatening illnesses. There are two non-competitive cycling categories to take part in, 20km and 70km, with each category having a different qualifying amount for donations. Participants can cover the total distance at their own pace and cycle outdoors or indoors. This year’s edition will include a new 2km wheelchair category, open to the beneficiaries of Club Rainbow and their caregivers. Find out more and sign up at rideforrainbows.org .
Lower Peirce Reservoir
There are many great (and free!) places in Singapore to make the most of “golden hour” with your camera; here are 10 spots on our list! #1 Helix Bridge If you’ve got dinner plans at Marina Bay, pop over to the bridge around sunset for some amazing views across the water as it lights up for the evening. #2 Fullerton Boardwalk This tourist hotspot, where the Merlion is situated, is a nice place to appreciate dusk. The sun sets right in front of your eyes while Marina Bay, the Helix Bridge and the ArtScience Museum light up across the river.
#4 Lower Peirce Reservoir This park at Upper Thomson has a wonderful rainforest backdrop, with a small pavilion out on the water – ideal for watching the sun go down. #5 Mount Faber To see a lovely mix of greenery and skyscrapers, make the hike up Mount Faber. The iconic hill is a great escape from the city crowds and a lovely spot to get a panoramic view of Singapore.
#6 Punggol Waterway Park The park is a nice place to go for a scenic run or a bike ride at dusk. In particular, the Jewel Bridge is a great vantage point to head to when the sun is setting. #7 Marina East If you go across to Marina Bay Golf Course and walk down the path that leads to Marina Barrage, you’ll be treated to some stunning views. The sun reflects off the glistening water here, reflecting the Singapore skyline. #8 Changi Boardwalk breathtaking Sunset Walk where you can catch the sun dipping over Changi Point. #9 Woodlands Waterfront The 1.5-kilometre-long promenade runs around the bay, with a bunch of different lookout points over the Straits of Johor. #10 Labrador Nature Reserve This seaside park in the South is a peaceful spot to catch the sun as it goes down. While you’re there, enjoy a stroll along one of its nature trails and look out for wildlife. The boardwalk is made up of four different sections, including the
#3 Marina at Keppel Bay This scenic spot has plenty of great
restaurants for a relaxing dinner. It’s worth a visit even if you don’t plan to eat. The waterfront is the perfect place for gazing at the orange hues of sunset over the yacht-filled waters.
Look for more things to do at expatliving.sg !
Labrador Nature Reserve
BEST LETTER We want to hear from you! Send us your thoughts on themagazine, or on any subject under the sun. The writer of our best letter receives a divine candle from To Be Calm
WHYSHE LOVES IT ATP is truly a tailored experience.Eachpersonhas different goals, genetics and levels of experiencewhen it comes to their history with exercise and training. ATP learns about you first, then approaches it from a consultative perspective – giving you their best,most efficientwayofhelpingyouget there.Theygiveyou the tools you need to continue this lifestyle beyond your time with them, too. Also, they encourage clients to approach their training fromawell-roundedstandpoint, taking into accountourdaily routines to reduce stress, optimise sleep andmaximise training time. My absolute favourite part aboutworking outwith Jac at ATP is seeingmy strength develop week after week. It’s incredibly satisfying to continuously break my own personal records with squats, Romanian deadlifts, trap-bar deadlifts andmore. In addition, Jac puts aheavy emphasison form,making sure Iperform exercises correctly.She alsomakes sure that I ambeing challenged,but to apointwhere Imaintainmyhealth. Shemotivatesme to pushmyself, but also celebrates every little successwithme aswell! CIRCUITBREAKERSUCCESS Janna’s been able to transform both her body and her lifestyle – even during theCircuit Breaker. In fact, she says itwas one of the bestways to keep herself busy and really focus onher goals. Iwas lucky enough to have purchased adjustable dumbbells, resistancebands and amatprior toCircuit Breaker, which made it easier to continue home workouts. Jacwasverymuch in touchandcontinued to createahome trainingworkoutprogramme forme.We kept trackofmyprogress tomakesure Iwascontinuing to buildmy strength and endurance; Jacmade sure she checked in on my mental health and wellbeing too, given that theCircuitBreakerwas a sensitive time for everyone. Shewas able to accommodatemy fitness needs andmyprioritiesduring that time. SPRAINS PAINS, & STRAINS Whether it’sbackpain, a strained muscleorasports i jury, it’susually easytotell ifsomething’s otright. What’s not always easy, however, isknowingwho toseekhelp from. Here’s a look at four different types of specialistswho can help with bone and joint problems, and what to expect from each. 1 Osteopath A holistic, drug-free and non-invasive form of alternativemedicine, osteopathy focuses on the body as awhole and employs a range of hands-onmanipulation techniques to restore function,decreasepain and prevent reoccurrence of an injurywithout the use ofmedication or surgery. “The body is a single unit,” says DR JONMARSHALL, osteopath and founderof Back inHealth , an integrated service that incorporates osteopathy, dry needling, cupping, corrective exercise, clinical Pilates, and ergonomic, health and lifestyle advice. “That’s our overarching doctrine; the body functions as a single unit with synchronised and interconnectedmovements and energy. So, pain or dysfunction that you think isonly affectingone areamaybe affecting another area, too. Sometimes,patientsdon’tevennotice thatotherareasare inpainor tight because the immediate siteofpain is sopalpable.” Overall, I’m much more active in my day to day, whether it’s training at ATP,working out from home, running, or cycling all over Singapore – Imake it a priority tomovemybodyonewayoranotherday today. I cookmore healthy, nutrient-packedmeals at home, but still indulge in treats once in a while. I’mmuch moremindful of how I treatmy body, and how I take care ofmyself.We only have one body, sowe have to make surewe’redoingourbest tonourishourselves!
JANNAJALLAUMETIN Looking todevelophealthiernutritionand fitnesshabitsat thestartof 2020,Filipino-American expat Janna turned to ATPFitness ,where she began working out with Jacqueline three times a week.Now, more than sixmonths in, Janna is downmore than 15 kilograms (35 pounds).Needless to say, she has seen incredible results from herone-on-one sessions,which incorporate lotsofweightliftingand conditioning tobuild strength andpromote fat loss. “I had triedmany times tomake an overall lifestyle change, but didn’thave the energy orbandwidth to educatemyself. Iknew that gettinghelp fromaprofessionalwouldbemuchmore impactfuland efficient, especially trying to balancemy career,my social life and adjusting to living in anew country,” she says.
PERSONAL! FiveELreaderssharetheirexperiences withone-on-onefitness training. NATHALIALOSSOVSKA Looking togetback toherpre-pregnancyweightafterhaving her third child,Ukraine-bornNathalia turned to Ultimate Performance Singapore (UP) for guidance. Since January 2020, Nathalia’s been working with trainer Kenneth three times a week, focusing predominantly on weight lifting – complemented with nutrition support.When she’s not workingoutwithUP,she’srunning,cycling, takingbriskwalks ordoingother typesofcardio tokeepupherphysicalactivity. WHYSHE LOVES IT Diet is thekeywhenyouwant toget tonedor loseweight, while the exercise is the necessary accessory. UP combines the two intooneperfectconcoction. Ihave to log inand send the photos of allmymeals tomy trainer,which keepsme accountable andpreventsme from slacking off.Throughout myUP journey,Kenneth has been very diligent in adjusting and revisingmymeal plans to accommodatemywants and needs,whilenot losing trackof the endgoalofgetting tomy idealweight. I’m certain that I couldn’t have achieved these results in such a short span of timewithoutUP. Kenneth pays very close attention to my form while gradually increasing the weight every other session; this ensures that I continue to build upmusclemass. I also love the fact that thegym isnotovercrowded,andeveryoneatUP is very committed and focused onbettering themselves. GETTING
Weonlyhaveonebody, sowe have tomake surewe’redoing ourbest tonourishourselves.
CIRCUITBREAKERSUCCESS I trained virtuallywithKenneth once aweek andwe had catch-up calls inbetween to ensure that Iwas still “on track”.During the rest of theweek, I didmy ownweight trainingand running. Ididhavesomephysicalsetbacks (an ankle injury thatcausedproblems,and stiff shoulders from working onmy laptop thewhole day) – not tomention major cravings, where I would plunder the kitchen for anything containing chocolate. I made it a point to be honestabout these setbackswithmy trainer,and itpaidoff because he had skillfully guidedme through the difficult timesby adjustingmydiet and exercise routine. Inow feelconfidentandenergetic,andmore toned than I’vebeen inmywhole life,which feelsamazing. I feelstrong andhealthy, and can finally run seven kilometres andnot feel suffocated after fiveminutes; Ihavedeveloped a “can do”mentalitywhen it comes to fitness. On the diet front, I’ve discovered that I used to overeat atmeals; I now know that knowing what you eat, and planning yourmeals ahead, iskey. My friends and familywho had not seenme during the CircuitBreakerperiodwereamazed tosee theresults; in fact, some of them toldme that seeingmy transformation had motivated them tostartpursuing theirown fitnessgoals. UltimatePerformanceSingapore GroundFloor,ManulifeBuilding,8CrossStreet 65368649 |upfitness.com.sg
( tobecalm.com ). Each month, there’ll be one of their signature candles to choose from.
159 Heexplains thatosteopathsnotonlyaddress thesiteofpain,butalso treat thewholebody in theprocess.Treatments,hesays,arespecifically tailored tohealand improve thepatient’sconditionand improvewhole- body health for the long term.Depending on the individual patient’s healingcapabilities, lifestyleactivitiesandother factors, this treatment timeline can vary; but, ongoing treatment for an indefinite period is certainlynot required, saysDrMarshall. “We don’t believe in over-treating or having a fixed timeline for treatments.Oneof the very first thingsosteopaths learn is ‘Find it, fix it and leave it alone’.Thehumanbodyhas an innate capacity for self- regulation and healing.Our aim is to assist the patient inmanaging and restoring thebody tooptimal functionby removingany ‘obstacles’ holding thebodyback frompeakhealth.” And osteopathy isn’t just for neck and back pain. “A common misconception about osteopathy is that the profession is limited to the spine,or that it’s just aboutbones,” saysDrMarshall. “Osteopaths aremedically trained to understand and treat the entire body, and have an expertknowledge about the skeletal system,muscle anatomy, internalorgans, joints,nerves,connective tissueandbloodcirculation. Apart from the spine and back, osteopaths can treat the head, arms and legs, for example.” SEPTEMBER2020
ATPFitness #01-01TheOctagon, 105CecilStreet 8189 1789 | atp.fitness
Ihavedevelopeda ‘can do’mentalitywhen it comes tofitness.
Motivating Mag! There are few things as motivating as a great health and fitness article. I always look forward to getting my Expat Living magazine as it not only motivates me, but provides great workouts, tips and ideas for getting strong and staying healthy, even in a pandemic. I’m a medical professional, so late nights and shifts at work are inevitable. But Expat Living magazine is an informative and entertaining break – it helps me to reduce stress levels and deal with anxiety, especially in the midst of COVID-19. I enjoy attending your online events, and I also find interesting ideas for making changes to my lifestyle, and setting a goal of being healthy, happy and successful. – Sharon Shields Ed: This is so good to hear! Yes, it’s nice to be able to listen to the events, even if you can’t make them physically; keep an eye out for more of themcoming up. And thanks for being with us! 163 SEPTEMBER2020 Whilemany patients do come to hisCBD, EastCoast andNovena clinicswithneck orbackpain, other common issueshe seespatients for include headaches andmigraines, occupational-related injuries, sports injuriesandprevention,andgrowingpains inchildrenand teens.
in Fat Tyres Frozen Lands BY CHRISTINEAMOUR-LEVAR PHOTOGRAPHY HERPLANETEARTH,SANDRALIMANDJUDITHVONPROCKL
If you’re a regular reader of Expat Living, you’ll know that we enjoy following the adventures of the HER Planet Earth team as they explore some of the world’s far- flungcorners.Thistime,they journey acrossGreenland –bybicycle! T here’s no doubt that traversing the full lengthofGreenland’sArcticCircleTrailat theheartofwinteron abikewill stand as oneof themostextraordinaryandunique experiences ofmy life. The journey saw the HER Planet Earth team push our limits to thebrinkof exhaustiononmultipleoccasions in extreme conditions and temperatures, across one of themostawe-inspiringand stunninglybeautifulplaces I’vewitnessed. The goal of this pioneering expeditionwas to raise awarenessand funds (a team totalofoverHK$280,000) forunderprivilegedwomen affectedby climate change inAsia.WhyGreenland?Because it’soneof the last final frontiers.Eightypercent covered in ice, its glaciers are contributing to a rise in the global sea level faster than was previously believed. As this accelerates, many coastal citieswill be affected – andAsian citieswill be hitmuch harder than others given their population, economic activity and landmass. The processes that control sea-level rise are amplified inAsia.As a result, about fouroutofevery fivepeople impactedbysea-level riseby2050will live inEast or SoutheastAsia.
AWelcome Escape I’m sitting at Baker & Cook at Dempsey, held captive by the rain. In my lovely one hour here, I picked up your glossy September issue as it featured snow – it looked like such a welcome departure from our present reality, that it piqued my interest. The visuals and picture spreads were scintillating! They whisked me away to a different world – a “wow” world. The content was locally relevant yet provided threads to the alternate universe that we aren’t used to with the borders shut. I’m glad I was held captive here. I wouldn’t have discovered your magazine with its postcard-pretty pages. It teleported me to a different part of the world, while keeping me riveted to my seat. Thank you. – Kim Lee Ed: Your email cheered us all up; thanks somuch for taking the time to write in. And we’re so glad that we’ve created a nice escape in these strange months!
Email us at email@example.com A holistic, dr osteo SPRAINS PAINS, Peaceful Reading Through this whole period, I have found reading my Expat Living mag has been the most relaxing thing to do. It’s totally different from digital and I am so over looking at my phone! So thank you. – Judit Ed: Thanks, good to hear print is still alive and doing its job! STRAINS 1 Osteopath
Whether it’s back pain, a strained muscle or a sports injury, it’s usually easy to tell if something’s not right. What’s not always easy, howeve is knowing who to seek h Here’s a look at types of s wi
Don’tmissour online events! Register at expatliving.sg/ELevents Talking TEENS Body Image and Eating Disorders with Dr Chris Eldridge & Dr Charu Narayanan 02 OCT 10am
29 OCT 10am 21 OCT 10am 07 OCT 10am 30 OCT 10am
with The Viva Group FREE ONLINE MAT & PROPS PILATES WORKOUT
Essential Oils for Dummies Talk and Q&A with Ollie
Planning for University During COVID Times Talk and Q&A with Kemal Taskin and Christian Yanez of the Canadian International School
with Cluny Court & Big Blue Trunk
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This subscription offer ends 31 October 2020. The winner will be announced and notified by 2 November 2020. Subscription orders received after 15 October will start with the December issue.
HOME & PROPERTY
48 Mixed Media: Art to adorn your walls
The Art of Charlotte
28 Home Showcase: A heritage-inspired pad off Holland Road
42 Hosting Handbook: How to throw a Mediterranean dinner party
54 Clear the Clutter: Great finds for smart and stylish storage
Tall Order Known for reinterpreting icons of our imagination with a playful spirit, quirky Italian brand Qeeboo brings renowned design provocateurs into interior spaces around the world. Featured in the latest arrivals to Singapore is this whimsical statement piece. Designed by Marcantonio, Giraffe In Love is a 2.65-metre standing chandelier, guaranteed to spark the imagination of all. Available in ivory and black at $5,800. journeyeast.com
Urban Retreat is a new sustainable collection from Crate & Barrel that’s designed to weave tranquillity and calm into your home. It focuses on creating a sophisticated and soft look, with luxury in the detail, so your stylist sanctuary looks effortlessly put-together. Think calming pastels and colour-washed hues, coupled with soft textures and crisp tailoring – you’ll never want to leave home! crateandbarrel.sg
Save on Teak Here’s good news: you can enjoy up to 60 percent off at Scanteak until 25 October! Get up to $500 cashback when you purchase one of the store’s plush sofas, as well as 15 percent off selected bedroom items when you purchase a teak bedframe. You’ll even snag yourself a free Vika folding chair, worth $169, when you purchase one of the selected dining sets. Visit scanteak.com.sg to find your nearest showroom.
Trendy Threads The newest interior fabric collection from Armani/Casa Textiles by Rubelli has arrived exclusively at the Altfield Interiors Showroom. The Shape of Colours collection is inspired by modern art and features embroideries, ikat effects and fantasy wefts in a classic Armani neutral palette, brought to life with bright and vivid details. Check out the range of 11 new designs at 1 Magazine Road, #07-10 Central Mall Office Tower .
Scrub-a-Dub As household hygiene continues to take top priority, 3M is meeting demand with a newly launched series of antibacterial sponges. The Scotch-Brite Scrub Dots Sponge has over 500 abrasive dots that easily cut through dirt and stains,
plus antibacterial foam and special coating to repel residue and eliminate bacteria. Available in two variants – Heavy Duty and Non-Scratch – at FairPrice, Lazada, RedMart and selected outlets. scotch-brite.com.sg
HOME & PROPERTY
But you wouldn’t know it isn’t one, when you’re at the home of expat FERGUS EVANS; his place is heritage-inspired, full of travel memories and utterly charming.
W hen British lawyer Fergus Evans found a new home off of Holland Road earlier this year, he didn’t have to think twice about who he’d enlist to oversee the style and design aesthetics of the property. Having worked with Singaporean styling and interiors company Arete Culture (areteculture.com) in 2018 on the renovation of his heritage shophouse in Blair Road (featured on the cover of this very magazine in October 2018), he contacted the award-winning team once more to achieve the same great results. As an avid collector of artwork, sculptures and antique furniture, Fergus wanted to showcase his collection while ensuring that his home felt bright, fresh and comfortable. Much of his furniture was transferred from his old place, while Arete Culture arranged for some eclectic custom-made additions, not least because the new house – which boasts four ensuite bedrooms, a gym, study, living room, dining room and outdoor space – is twice as large as Fergus’s previous bachelor pad.
BY JO UPCRAFT
The outcome is a delicious global style that reflects who Fergus truly is. As the interiors project collided with the start of Circuit Breaker, he officially moved in July – in fact, Expat Living was one of his first house guests! What brought you to Singapore, Fergus? My mother’s family are from Kuala Lumpur; they’ve been in the region for over a hundred years. I was born at Gleneagles Hospital and grew up in Singapore in a beautiful old black-and-white house on Kay Siang Road, just off of Tanglin Road. I loved growing up here: I went to the original Tanglin School, which was located where the Brunei Embassy is today, and I have very fond memories of riding my bike around what used to be a cul-de-sac, but is now part of a dual carriageway. So, you have lived here all of your life? My parents and I left Singapore when I was 19, and after university in the UK I spent many years working in Vietnam, Hong Kong and Bangkok. Returning to Singapore to work was always a possibility; when it happened in 2017, I found myself searching for a black-and-white heritage property so I could relive my childhood memories. Instead, I ended up living in a gorgeous shophouse on Blair Road, but sadly had to vacate the premises earlier this year as it became structurally unsafe.
What made you choose this house? When I discovered I had to move, I approached property agent Isabel Redrup (isabelredrup.com) who helped me find the shophouse. She knew I loved colonial style, but that I also wanted modern amenities, so she alerted me to this house – it’s essentially a pastiche of a black-and-white home. It has four ensuite bedrooms upstairs and wonderful high ceilings and fans, but it also comes with all the conveniences. It’s a great compromise on a heritage home. There isn’t a large garden, but the veranda is lovely, and I have a single length pool. How would you describe your home style? Overstuffed! I adore art and my collection comprises items from my parents, carvings from my travels, antique Chinese furniture, Japanese pottery, plus paintings and photographs fromHong Kong, Thailand and Singapore. I could never do “minimalist”!
HOME & PROPERTY
Your art collection is fabulous. What are your favourite pieces? My quirkiest piece is my colourful sumo wrestler statue, who I had commissioned from Art Porters Gallery. At over five-feet tall he stands as my doorman and he’s a great talking point. I also like my picture of Alfred Hitchcock in 1972, which I bought from Paris, and my black and white prints of Ernest Hemingway and Fidel Castro that I picked up on my travels to Cuba in February. My picture of the ex-King of Thailand, with its bright pink background, is the showstopper, and it takes pride of place on my staircase. What would you miss if you were to leave Singapore? Like most people, I adore the cosmopolitan food scene here. My dreammeal is Hainanese chicken rice followed by sago gula melaka . It can be quite hard to find the two dishes on the same menu: Tanglin Club and Singapore Cricket Club do them both. I love Bhutan. The scenery is amazing, and I stayed at the COMO properties, which were beautiful and served incredible food. Reaching the top of Tiger’s Nest was a challenge and I needed a few cups of sugary tea to get me there! When I return, I hope to be a bit fitter, so I perhaps need to do more lengths of my pool! Tell us about your favourite holiday spot in the region …
This is a great compromise on a heritage home
HOME & PROPERTY
CAROLINE CHIN GEYLER from Arete Culture talks us through her designs and inspiration. Lounge • We sectioned the lounge space into two separate seating areas: one formal (far end with the blue sofas) and one informal (grey seating area in front of the TV) • We built a new bar cabinet and introduced a new round coffee table set; both are from Arete Culture • New rugs in the living room softened the look of the graphic black and white geometric floor • Since the informal seating area used a subdued colour palette, we chose a patterned rug for visual contrast • New pieces either have a metallic finish, a reflective sheen, or are made of glass for a luxurious and more balanced look Dining • Fergus’s existing dining table was too small for the dining room (behind the sliding doors in the lounge), so the Jasmine sideboard and dining table (a whopping 2.6 metres) and chairs were custom made by Arete Culture • Blue accents run throughout the home – in the dining room, a darker shade for a touch of drama and glam; in the living room, pops of orange, grey and taupe for a fresher feel Master Bedroom • The second floor doesn’t get much natural light, so we didn’t want to overwhelm the space with colour; instead, we decorated the common corridor in the style of an art gallery • This room is huge, sectioned off with a cosy seating area and splashes of Fergus’s favourite colour, blue • We wanted to highlight the art pieces against the darker walls; we also used the modern, geometric rug as a contrast to the pared-back and tranquil feel Other Spaces • The guest bedrooms are feature pieces we styled for his previous home • The veranda is the perfect place for Fergus to sit amongst the memories of his travels after a dip in the pool
Art Art Porters Gallery 64 Spottiswoode Park Road artporters.com
Groceries Huber’s Butchery, 22 Dempsey Road hubers.com.sg
For late-night prata Al-Jailani 89 Kampong Bahru Road 6222 2754
For a blow-out treat Yen Yakiniku 15 Ann Siang Road theyengroup.com.sg
Though they’re in different parts of the globe, India, Indonesia and theAfrican continent all boast rich and colourful histories and cultures. They share another trait, too: they all have highly skilled furniture-making traditions. One Singapore store that knows this well is Originals. We asked the team for insights into the pieces they carry from these three exotic locations.
Fab Furniture from Africa to Asia
BY DEE KHANDUJA
First stop, India: what Indian treasures can we find at Originals? Our favourite pieces from India have to be the original doorframes. These are all original hand- carved teak, most coming from Rajasthan, which has a rich historical tapestry, featuring palaces, incredible architecture, royal Mughal history, epic battles and victories. It’s an incredibly beautiful state in India, and the craftsmanship showcases a moment in time. At Originals, our carpenters have used these doorframes to create stunning mirrors and bookcases. There’s quite a process and journey with selecting and repurposing the doorframes into mirrors. To begin with, it’s actually quite rare to find doorframes that are still in good condition. So we scour for pieces that are special and have a story to tell. We visualise our clients owning a piece of historic craftsmanship – and a piece of functional art – in their homes. First, the doorframe has to be structurally sound. Next, we look for interesting carvings and designs and colours that work well in contemporary settings. We also consider size, as we want our mirrors to work in landed properties as well as in apartments. Occasionally, we find a truly massive piece. While these larger pieces won’t work in every home, they are just too beautiful to walk away from! How do you go about repurposing a Rajasthani doorframe into a mirror? What’s your criteria when making your final selection? Once you’ve fitted the mirror, what happens to the remaining parts of the door? When we’re particularly lucky, we find a doorframe that has an intact door as well. These doors are amazing mounted as an art feature for walls. Or we convert them into coffee or dining tables.
HOME & PROPERTY
What items do you stock from Indonesia? We’ve worked with the same Indonesian supplier for about 16 years and they work exclusively for Originals. We provide employment to a small group of skilled carpenters based out of Java, who make every item by hand. Each piece showcases the beauty of the old teak timber that has aged so gracefully – we keep the designs minimalist to let the teak speak for itself. And what sort of furniture do you create in Java? Everything! We have coffee tables, dining tables, beds and sideboards. These pieces are constructed from large planks of salvaged teak, which makes them real statement pieces in your home. Our Javanese Nomad collection is exclusive to us. Would you say you’re better known for your sofas, or your furniture and furnishings from interesting corners of the globe? We’d say we are known for both. Our sofas are very popular and our range has grown steadily over the years. Customers like their practicality and quality. Our current favourite is the Hansen Modular sofa, which is available in a number of different arrangements and over 50 fabrics.
It’s unusual to find authentic African furnishings in a Singapore home. What are your favourite African pieces? Our African range is always in demand, as we only have two shipments per year, and we’re the only retailer in Singapore bringing in consistent shipments from Africa. Everything is handmade, authentic and truly one-off. No one piece is identical to another. Our particular favourites are our Malawi chairs, Bamileke stools and decorative Tonga baskets, which look wonderful as wall-art. Tell us about the chairs. The Malawi chairs go through an interesting creation process, where they are handwoven from sturdy cane. Once we receive the items in our workshop, we put them through another process of quality control and finish them in different colours. We love the authenticity and workmanship behind each chair. Your African stools and coffee tables are a standout; what’s the story behind them? Our Bamileke stools are very special as they represent status, wealth and rank amongst the Bamileke tribe (Cameroon’s largest ethnic group). Each piece is hand-carved from a single tree trunk in an intricate woven pattern that represents the web of the earth spider, a symbol of wisdom. We also source large Senufo day-beds that work well as coffee tables. Beautiful grains of tree trunk are visible in these pieces, which have their own unique characteristics, markings and origins.
1 Bukit Batok Street 22, Level 5 6471 9918 | firstname.lastname@example.org
HOME & PROPERTY
Furniture Finds in JooChiat A visit to China Collection’s shophouse store is like taking a trip down memory lane.
BY DEE KHANDUJA
Walking past the neighbourhood’s brightly coloured shophouses with their quaint details and feature architecture is the stuff of postcards. You can’t miss the store itself, standing grandly on the corner with a fresh lick of blue and white paint, and an inviting window display. We recently paid a visit to chat to owner DOUG LOCKETT, to ask him about new arrivals and other in-store developments. You’ve been in your store for almost a year; how’s the new space going? A year has sped by, to be honest, but the store is looking good, with a totally different vibe to our previous black-and-white house setting. What made you go for a shophouse? We just loved all the original features on the outside of the building, and the lovely natural light makes the store bright and airy. I think we stand out because we’re on the corner, which means we also have this extra bonus space upstairs. We wanted to retain a “homely” vibe, so we had to be creative, and we distinctly tried to keep the look of downstairs and upstairs a bit different. What treasures are in store right now? Well there’s always something special in store, but right now we have a very rare piece from Northern China; there’s also a beautiful rare altar with original carvings retained. We have some lovely, elegant, natural elm cupboards, as well as our usual home accessories.
What do you like about dealing with antiques? I like the fact that every piece is individual, so once it’s gone, it’s gone. That’s why the shop is continuously changing its look. I also love travelling to China to source pieces. Is there a particular part of China where most of your furniture comes from? The style of furniture we like originates from Northern China. It tends to have a simpler form without being overly ornate or carved, which we find to be more elegant and beautiful. Our clients also seem to prefer those types of pieces, as it allows them to integrate distinctly Chinese pieces without overwhelming a space. How do you restore your furniture? We work with our partners in restoration. Our team are really experts when it comes to working with old furniture. They understand the materials, history and cultural significance behind each item. When we find pieces, we assess them and may upcycle them, refurbish, modify or add new colours. Every piece starts off by being completely pulled apart, and then rebuilt. We then clean the woodwork, sand away any old residue, and decide whether a new finish or colour is to be applied. Having said that, we always err on the side of originality where possible, so the very finest antique pieces are kept in their original form and maintain their original finishes and patina.
HOME & PROPERTY
How easy is it for someone to display old and new pieces in a contemporary setting? We always suggest that you don’t overwhelm each room in your home with too many Chinese furniture pieces in general. You can achieve a nice balanced mix of contemporary and old, with maybe just one or two Chinese pieces, to give the space a really nice accent. Our recommendation is to buy slowly. If you take your time and come for a few visits before you decide to buy something, you’ll actually end up making a better buying decision. What’s your favourite piece in the store currently? We have a beautiful side-cabinet from Northern China that was formerly a trunk used to hold grain. It was actually almost twice as deep as it is now, so we modified it to function as a reasonable- sized piece in a modern home. We preserved the unique artwork in the front, which has a very Mongolian influence. I also love that the hardware is still intact and complete, which is rare to see.
China Collection is at 252 Joo Chiat Road. Opening hours are Monday to Saturday, 10 am to 5pm, and Sunday, 12pm to 5pm. chinacollection.com.sg What else is new for China Collection? We’re excited about the new e-commerce website we’re launching right now. We’ve always had a website, but having an e-commerce platform helps our clients to armchair-shop before they pay us a visit to inspect the antique pieces. We’ve always loved those tassels! Are they popular? Yes, they’re always popular gifts – for all occasions. Our clients love the symbology behind them, and of course the choice of colours and sizes. Are there any particular pieces that clients love most? Everyone has their own unique taste; however, I would say that our altars always seem to be popular. They are statement pieces that clients enjoy styling with accessories or lovely pieces of artwork above them. You have a shipment arriving soon; what treasures are in the container? One container has some natural elm wood furniture, which is simple and elegant. The other has all our restored painted furniture. We also have porcelain and our colourful jade and silk tassels coming in.
Hostinga BY DEE KHANDUJA PHOTOGRAPHY KATIE MARTIN-SPERRY
We’re hosting a dinner party and we need to create a dining concept from scratch; how do you suggest we lay our table with House of AnLi’s offerings? Firstly, I’d start with the table itself. I would pick our Versailles solid oak extendable table, which starts as a round 110cm diameter table that can be extended to 270cm, easily seating eight guests. I’m a fan of natural oak, as it’s easy to maintain using natural beeswax, and looks natural yet bold in an understated way. I’d pair the tablewith our oakMontreal chairs. The chairs are finished with a rattan backrest and come with seating cushions in natural washable linen. The table and chairs can be ordered from our “ready-to-go” range, which means we can deliver them to your home within 24 hours. Want to make your next dinner party super easy – and super stylish? Just get what you need from House of AnLi! The retail and bistro concept has everything from furniture to cutlery to delicious food inspired by Greece and Italy. Co-founder PANAGIOTIS LYNAS shares some of his favourites.
Now that we have that sorted, let’s talk table setting. A great table needs a great tablecloth or a runner. For a tablecloth, I’d select a nice colour from our coated linen range from France; or opt for our 100 percent cotton runner for its simplicity. I’d pair the runner with contrasting natural cotton napkins. Both the runner and napkins come in many colours and can be recycled, reused and re-washed up to three times. They’re completely biodegradable and compostable. I’d select crockery from either our fine stoneware Nova range from Portugal, which is a really nice and simple collection, baked at a high temperature so it’s shock-resistant. Or, for something with more flair, go for the exclusive hand-painted ceramic range from Italy. This range has vibrant designs ranging from leaves and fruit to sea animals. It’s a visual collection – and quite a talking point over dinner; and it’s made exclusively for House of AnLi. Every great table needs well-considered crockery. What would you recommend?
HOME & PROPERTY
Wonderful; how about cutlery? I’d go with the handmade Laguiole Jean Dubost range. This French brand uses the finest materials and really has an artisanal craftsman quality; they’re made to last. Any other decorative pieces for our dining concept? For a bold statement and conversation starter, I’d hang our Matti chandelier above the table; it’smade of wood and iron, and hand- carved and finished in raw form. For smaller touches on the table, bring in some colour and the essence of Mediterranean beaches with our napkin rings made in black lip shell. We also have some votive cylindrical semi-transparent candles that I would scatter on the table for a simple and elegant setting, reminiscent of balmy evenings on a Greek island. For food, I’d order from our Greek restaurant Pano Kato in Tanglin Mall – we have a range of mouthwatering Mediterranean favourites. For starters, serve the homemade mezze platter and dips like taramosalata (my father’s specialty), melinzanosalata (roasted eggplant) and tzatziki. These are wonderful sharing dishes that remind me of family dinners and bonding over laughter and fine food. As a centre dish, I’d definitely serve our signature moussaka. It’s authentically Greek, with a secret ingredient frommy own mother’s exact recipe. I’d also serve spanakopita, the popular spinach pie with fresh feta and dill; plus, a fresh, crunchy and crisp Greek salad on the side. For Italian-loving guests, our takeaway pizzas are freshly baked with cherry wood in our Pavesi oven, so they have a distinct flavour. I’d also serve our catch of the day, and a selection of charcoaled meats, which we grill in our Josper charcoal grill oven. And, to wash everything down in true Greek spirit, a magnum of Katogi Greek wine, from a mountainous estate in Western Greece. Oh, and save space for dessert, too, as noHouse of AnLi dinner party would be complete without a portion of Greek baklava. Our Belgian chocolate mousse and tiramisu are also favourites. House of AnLi is a retail plus a food concept. What would you have on the menu?
So, House of AnLi can literally sort out our dinner party from scratch? Yes, indeed – and we can cater for last-minute orders, from furniture to food. Everything can be ordered online. For furniture, we need 24 hours to deliver, but for food we can arrange same-day delivery. The only thing you need to sort out is the party invitations!
House of AnLi Bistro & Store #03-17 Tanglin Mall | 6235 3851 Pano Kato Grill, Pizza & Deli #02-23 Tanglin Mall | 6235 5056 House of AnLi Interiors #02-21/22 Tanglin Mall | 6235 5193 houseofanli.com
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