It is a common misconception that a Feng Shui-designed home would resemble a Chinese temple, and interior architect Chua Caik Leng set out to dispel this notion with the renovation of a high-end apartment unit at Bukit Ceylon. Not only was the home satisfactorily ‘Feng Shui-calibrated’, but it was achieved with a modern and tasteful design.
Complying with these requirements posed several challenges as some sectors are only suitable for very specific functions. For example, the existing flush toilet in the master bathroom was in an unfavourable position for the home owner, and it was no easy task to swap it with the shower in a high-rise building of stacked services. This was painstakingly achieved by raising the shower and toilet floor to run new plumbing, which was hidden under an attractive merbau timber deck.
The ceiling and walls of the living and dining areas are designed with curves. Functionally, this serves to direct guests away from the private living areas and towards the ‘entertainment’ domains, such as the dining, living and study areas. Aesthetically, the curves bind the whole open plane together yet creating an obvious non-physical separation of the dining and living rooms. Geomantically, the pivot of the curved Arabescato Marble walls in the dining area coincides with the nautilus point of the main entrance.
The home owner’s children required much storage and display space in their room. They also wanted a cool place for their friends to come over and chill. Combining these two requirements resulted in a cubicle-like dwelling that welcomes visitors while preserving a cosy personal space.
The Feng Shui influence extends to the decorative items—such as the 17 silver goldfishes or the ‘floating’ Kuan Yin statue—choice of materials and colour selections. Almost all the furniture was imported from Bangkok, requiring much coordination in terms of dimensioning, aesthetic composition and relationship to other spaces.
Some of existing structure are of RC shear wall construction, which could neither be hacked, penetrated nor modified, so the designer had to carefully study the as-built structural drawings to ensure the structural integrity of the building is not compromised with any changes. — Construction+ Online
Project Name: Verticas Residensi Apartment Renovation
Location: 10, Jalan Ceylon, Bukit Ceylon, Kuala Lumpur
Completion Date: January 2016
Gross Floor Area: 170 square metres
Interior Design Firm: Environmental Design Practice Sdn Bhd
Principal Designer: Ar Chua Caik Leng
Interior Fit-Out Contractor: ITF Associates Sdn Bhd
Images: Environmental Design Practice Sdn Bhd