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Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners was approached by a private client to design a large family home on a site located in one of Singapore’s most exclusive residential areas.

The original brief was for a group of buildings within a garden setting including the main family home, swimming pool and small guest house/pavilion. However, as the project evolved and the family expanded, the guest house accommodation grew to become a substantial five-bedroom, 650 m² home in its own right; a smaller third dwelling of 120 m² was subsequently added. The three homes – interconnected via an outdoor lounge and swimming pool area – are set within extensive landscaped tropical gardens.

The masterplan organises the buildings along the rear boundaries of the site so they appear to ‘nestle’ within the landscape. The main house is situated along the highest part of the site – there is a 10-metre change in levels from the rear of the site to the street frontage – and is two storeys plus a large basement area. A double-height entrance foyer leads visitors into the lower and upper levels of the main house, offering tree-top views onto the landscaped gardens and terraced areas below, as well as panoramic views of Singapore’s skyline.

The modular design of the buildings is organised according to a very clear linear expression based on a 4.5 m structural grid. The plans are simple and rational; the large open plan living, entertaining, and sleeping areas are all arranged to face the central garden, maximising views, while each is organised so that privacy between the buildings is maintained. Western and Asian kitchens, bathrooms and service and staff facilities are located to the rear boundary edges of the property.

The buildings are primarily steel-framed structures with concrete shear infill walls, where required. The main house stability system is anchored by the lift and stair core which provides lateral stability. The principal façades are full-height aluminium framed glass. These maximise internal views across the site.

The main house establishes the language for the rest of the pavilions. It is characterised by large roof overhangs, cantilevered upper floors, limestone-clad retaining wall structures and predominantly glass façades. Each pavilion is different in its own right yet connected by the use of structure, materials and form. The lines of the earth-retaining structures extend away from the buildings into the landscape establishing both a visual and physical connection between the buildings.

The original brief was for a group of buildings within a garden setting including the main family home, swimming pool and small guest house/p>

The modular design of the buildings is organised according to a very clear linear expression based on a 4.5m structural grid. It draws upon some of the ideas of Frank Lloyd Wright’s ‘Prairie Houses’, low, extended buildings which are characterised by shallow, sloping roofs, overhangs and terraces. Views are maximised, while each residence is organised so that privacy between the buildings is maintained. All service, kitchen, bathroom and staff facilities are located to the rear boundary edges of the property.

The masterplan organises the buildings along the rear boundaries of the site so they appear to ‘nestle’ within the landscape. The main house – with an internal area of approximately 1,500 m² – is situated along the highest part of the site and is two storeys plus a large basement area. A double-height entrance foyer leads visitors into the lower and upper levels of the main house, offering tree-top views onto the landscaped gardens and terraced areas below, as well as panoramic views of Singapore’s skyline.

The main house establishes the language for the rest of the pavilions. It is characterised by large roof overhangs, cantilevered upper floors, limestone clad retaining wall structures and predominantly glass façades. Each pavilion is different in its own right yet connected by the use of structure, materials and form. The lines of the earth retaining structures extend away from the buildings into the landscape establishing both a visual and physical connection between the buildings.

The main house is crowned with an upper storey that appears to float. This is achieved by the use of high-level windows and the horizontal expression of the steel facia at both floor and roof level. This is also reflected in the articulation of the roof and facade elements in the two larger pavilions.

As well as provision for living and dining areas, Western and Asian kitchens and staff quarters and storage, the brief required a large master bedroom suite on the upper floor of the main house with adjacent bathrooms, study and office areas. The upper floor of the main house is a private sanctuary that is very separate to the formal living spaces below housing guest accommodation, a gymnasium, massage room, two private offices as well as the master bedroom suite with changing and bathroom facilities. The Interiors were designed by Kathryn Kng.

There is a 10-metre change in levels from the rear of the site to the street frontage. To overcome this change, the six-car garage accommodation, plant room areas, staff accommodation, storage, library, and cinema & entertainment areas are built into the ground, minimising the building mass from the street frontage. External steps link the main house with the other pavilions.

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners was approached by a private client to design a large family home on a site located in one of Singapore’s most exclusive residential areas.

The original brief was for a group of buildings within a garden setting including the main family home, swimming pool and small guest house/pavilion. However, as the project evolved and the family expanded, the guest house accommodation grew to become a substantial five-bedroom, 650 m² home in its own right; a smaller third dwelling of 120 m² was subsequently added. The three homes – interconnected via an outdoor lounge and swimming pool area – are set within extensive landscaped tropical gardens.

The masterplan organises the buildings along the rear boundaries of the site so they appear to ‘nestle’ within the landscape. The main house is situated along the highest part of the site – there is a 10-metre change in levels from the rear of the site to the street frontage – and is two storeys plus a large basement area. A double-height entrance foyer leads visitors into the lower and upper levels of the main house, offering tree-top views onto the landscaped gardens and terraced areas below, as well as panoramic views of Singapore’s skyline.

The modular design of the buildings is organised according to a very clear linear expression based on a 4.5 m structural grid. The plans are simple and rational; the large open plan living, entertaining, and sleeping areas are all arranged to face the central garden, maximising views, while each is organised so that privacy between the buildings is maintained. Western and Asian kitchens, bathrooms and service and staff facilities are located to the rear boundary edges of the property.

The buildings are primarily steel-framed structures with concrete shear infill walls, where required. The main house stability system is anchored by the lift and stair core which provides lateral stability. The principal façades are full-height aluminium framed glass. These maximise internal views across the site.

The main house establishes the language for the rest of the pavilions. It is characterised by large roof overhangs, cantilevered upper floors, limestone-clad retaining wall structures and predominantly glass façades. Each pavilion is different in its own right yet connected by the use of structure, materials and form. The lines of the earth-retaining structures extend away from the buildings into the landscape establishing both a visual and physical connection between the buildings.

Key Facts

Date
2005-2010

Location
Singapore, Singapore

Main house
1,500m²

Pavilion 1
1,650m²

Pavilion 2
120m²

Site area
6,070m²

Co-Architect
Architects 61

Structural Engineer
Buro Happold and MSE

Services Engineer
Bescon Consulting Engineers

Project Manager
Como Holdings

Lighting Consultant
Isometrix

Landscape Architect
One Degree North

Contractor
Daiwa Engineering & Construction

Interior design
Kathryn King