Spartan, wrought from metal, hewn from stone, or carved out of wood. One’s first man cave must look effortless in its assertion of masculinity, yet retain the character of a decisive pack leader.
We reached out to Qanvast – an online platform that connects a growing community of interior designers (and architects) to homeowners dreaming up a niche interior – to bring you a peek into Singapore’s most stylish bachelor pads.
01: One Shenton by Posh Home
Well-stocked drinks bar, check. Masculine colour scheme, check. Television for one? Almost – there’s actually another single-seater in the living room that’s not photographed. But deviating from the typical family couch sends a powerful message: this houseowner likes flying solo. The bar seats up to four, the bare minimum for an entertaining poker game, with alcohol within arm’s reach.
The designer lets on that the client had a “365-day showroom” concept in mind. To that end, hideaway (the industry slang for “concealed”) fixtures were employed in every possible area: dustbins, ironing boards, cabling and even a secret compartment to stow away the previous day’s newspapers.
Tip from Designer (Robin): The choice of material in furnishings is particularly important; for example, stainless steel skirting imparts a cold, corporate and posh feel, while usage of fabric and carpets make a room cosier.
02: Duchess Road by Hall Interiors
The logic is simple – a lone wolf who rarely cooks can afford to merge the kitchen and living areas for a larger sense of space. The designer consequently tore down the connecting wall and installed a suspended island from which the host can do light cooking and entertain concurrently.
Dark colours in the furniture and materials (such as an oaken floor and a concrete pillar), not to mention the industrial lighting and chrome exhaust hood, mark this territory as unmistakably male.
Tip from Designer (Randoll): An open space kitchen concept makes room for much more interaction when visitors are over, and the added sense of space is pure gravy (especially if you don’t cook frequently).
03: Archipelago by Schemacraft
A client with a clear vision in mind makes life both better and more challenging for designers; it’s easier to deliver on a schematic than a vague plan, yet sometimes design principles may not align with the client’s wishes. The Archipelago is a success story of compromise between the two parties.
The striking timber ceiling in the living room was initially planned for the foyer, but that magnum opus was eventually saved for the hall (see tip below). To smooth over the stark contrast between ceiling and floor, a cement screed accent was applied to the walls. This project also included a walk-in wardrobe, the perfect accompaniment for gents with an array of suits, shirts, ties, cufflinks, caps, and watches to manage.
Tip from Designer (Martin): Apply principles of Freytag’s Pyramid – the go-to formula for dramatic structure – when planning your house: start with a gentle exposition (door / facade), slowly build up rising action (in the foyer), and climax in the hall or living room.
04: Nin Residences by Uno Interior
The centrepiece of the living room is the television feature wall – tiles were flown from Italy in disparate textures and patterns to supply a chic, dominant oeuvre on the otherwise pristine walls in the apartment. That fixture in the top right? A clock comprising just two hands – no face is required to tell the time, after all.
As with previous pads, the conjoining kitchen-living room wall was hacked to make room for a counter, this time with the express purpose of hosting “drinking kakis”. A bare-bones guest room for that one smashed friend doubles up as spare storage. In the master bedroom, dissimilar colours on different walls are used for more room depth and character, while the bright yellow television console interjects the monotony.
Tip from Designer (Sam): Darkening the master bedroom also enhances the cosiness within that space.
05: Spanish Village by Studio JP
While actually owned by a family, this project serves as a great blueprint for a larger pad which makes use of a lighter colour palette. Plus, there’s a standalone bar in the living room – all that’s needed now is a beer tap. A full kitchen in the back allows one who cooks often to get the serious work done first; he can then perhaps plate the food outside as guests look on in admiration.
As for the allure of the glass-walled en suite – we’ll leave that to your imagination.
Tip from Designer (Jonathon): White walls contribute to amplifying an already vast space, with wood elements used to round out the otherwise monochromatic scheme.