Family matters

The best homes are the ones that grow with you. This couple first moved into their flat in Po Garden, Mid-Levels seven years ago, attracted by the home's central location and stunning green view. They were parents to one young boy back then, but their family has since expanded over the years. By the time they were expecting their third child—a baby girl—they decided it was high time for a revamp. 

They tasked acclaimed interior designer Peggy Bels with the redesign project, having discovered her work through friends of theirs. "Their priority was to have a sleek yet kid-friendly flat that was cosy and easy to maintain," Bels explained. Bels left the flat's layout, which featured the living room flowing into the open kitchen, as is. However, she improved connectivity between spaces by introducing a light wood floor that ran through the entire flat, doing away with the kitchen's original tiled floor that cut it off from the rest of the home. A metal and glass sliding door easily closes off the kitchen when the couple is cooking, preventing aromas or noise from pervading the flat. Bels also converted the study into a play room, opening it up with a row of windows to let in more light and connect it to the rest of the home, while also granting more depth to the living area.

Bels' signature design aesthetic—an industrial-chic style that features plenty of greys and materials such as concrete and wood—might not seem like the obvious choice for a cosy family home. She offset these elements with soft fabrics and a variety of finishes to create warmth, while pops of colour evoked a sense of playfulness—especially in the play room. "I usually use metal for atelier windows, but I used grey wood for the play room for a cosier feeling," she said.

Furnishings are simple yet elegant, with the majority being custom made. A daybed from British design brand Habitat mingles with tables, ceramics and a rug from local eco-conscious brand TREE, while industrial pendant lighting and bar stools in the kitchen were sourced from one-stop design boutique Archetypal. Select statement-making pieces are scattered throughout the home to add character, from the sculptural lighting piece by Petite Friture in the master bedroom to the sculpture and colourful artwork that set the tone in the foyer. Clever storage solutions, from a storage room off of the living area to a TV that discreetly disappears behind cabinet doors covered in family photos, prevent clutter from piling up. Spectacular, curved picture windows, meanwhile, show off the amazing view.

While the couple put in long hours at work throughout the day, when they come home their focus is squarely on their children and spending quality time together—time that's only made better with the comfortable refuge Bels has created for them.