Singapore, you beauty!
In January, I took a trip to Singapore – my first overseas trip to do a reccie on design ideas that were different from home (Australia). And while my intentions were to focus on interiors, what surprised me and made perhaps the biggest impression was the wonderful architecture in Singapore. There is such a beautiful mix of the old with the new and the richness in the cityscape left me wishing that we did much more interesting envelops here in Sydney.
I meant to write a blog about my trip at the time but my work just went cray cray and this post was put on ice for a while. And I’m glad I did as it has allowed me time to reflect on those impressions for a few months. The effect of these revelations are ongoing and it has driven me and challenged me to stretch my own design ideas; to upskill in some areas (especially kitchen design); to immerse myself into the design world even more and to begin reaching out and to continue researching and looking at what I can learn from Singapore that’s relevant to my own work.
One of the most memorable days was a riverboat tour. I was literally blown away by the enormous range of shapes of buildings – there were so few square boxes and better still, I later learnt that many of the buildings are ‘smart’ using the latest technologies available for energy conservation, availability of parking spaces, water collection or recycling and so much more! I’m even today, some months later still learning more about Singapore’s architecture!
My favourite Singaporean structures
In my head there are my fave exterior finds which are completely different to my fave ‘Interiors’ discoveries, so my top 5 structures are:
1) the ArtScience building designed by Moshie Safdie. Consisting of ten ‘fingers’ with skylights at the end of each to harness natural light, the building also captures water at the base of the building
2) Marina Bay Sands – or the ship in the sky! This incredible building houses and hotel, casino, exhibition centre, shops, pool etc. When you first see it, you think ‘why’? But it is such a mesmerising creation, can be seen from much of Singapore, is so unique, the question quickly morphs to ‘why the hell not’!
3) Gardens by the Bay – seriously, who knew gardens could be so damn interesting! The curvy glass structures are exquisite as are the gardens within. We spent a few hours in the Cloud Dome and because it’s a walking tour that weaves in and out of a manmade ‘mountain’ it keeps the momentum going and kids don’t get bored (which in itself is a huge accomplishment!). We also loved the Supertree Grove
4) The Esplanade, Theatres on the Bay – a world class performing arts centre, the two rounded glass domes are fitted with 7,000 triangular aluminium sunshades giving it the look of local Durian fruit.
5) Clarke Quay – recently refurbished wining and dining area along the water front has a lovely combo of heritage building in a rainbow of colours with a canopy-structure overhead providing relief from the sun and heat of the day.
My next post will be about the inspiring interior-related finds that I love (and am still using as inspiration in my work). But to sum it up, Singapore is a fantastic place to visit for so very many reasons, and enjoying the energy in both the vibe and the architecture helps put this destination near the top of my list. I really was impressed and can’t wait to return!