Setting up a calming and soothing home has never been more important than in these tumultuous times. If you are looking to create some peace and quiet, consider going with the Zen style, which advocates for a minimalist, contemplative space free from clutter. Take inspiration from these restful HDB flats to find your inner Zen.
1. This 3-Room HDB Resale Flat is a Serene, Minimalist Bachelor Pad
Home to an interior designer and his pet beagle, this sleek and clean bachelor pad was a huge transformation from the dated and drab interiors of before, which prompted the homeowner to hack most of the original walls away. The result is an open space, with different zones segregated by storage units or glass dividers. The flexible bedroom with a Murphy bed can be hidden from view using a curtain.
Dark laminates and nature-inspired textures such as the granite-like floor tiles create an understated luxurious vibe. A long dining table, which doubles as a workstation, sits in the middle of the flat. Drawing the eye from the glass gated entrance into the inner sanctum, it is the few pieces of furniture in this minimalist home.
Design: 0932 Design Consultants
2. A Tampines BTO incorporates Zen Features
You often find the influence of Zen in Japanese style homes, and this BTO flat is no different. Clean lines and a subtle earthy palette define much of this apartment, while built-ins help to keep the clutter at bay. Efforts were made to introduce natural elements, through the use of wood furniture, wood-like tiles and woodgrain laminates, all varying in tone to create interest. At the foyer, the gravel floor surface is a nod to the Zen style and prompts the guest to take off their shoes before entering the home.
To accommodate a generous-sized walk-in wardrobe, the wall dividing two of the bedrooms was hacked away to provide easy access from the master bedroom to the closet. A tatami-decked platform by the window in the bedroom serves as an area for meditation and relaxation.
Design: Lemonfridge Studio
3. A Ryokan-Inspired Apartment adopts the Philosophy of ‘Calm Mind’
To create a retreat and escape from the hustle and bustle of the daily grind, the designers took inspiration from the idea of shizukokoro, which means calm mind, for the design of this Bukit Batok BTO flat. Another source of inspiration was from traditional Japanese ryokans, conventionally a place for rest and rejuvenation. You see their influence most predominantly in the raised timber platform deck and lowered ceiling in the living room.
To create the calming atmosphere, the designers used simple geometry and natural elements like oak. Frosted film and shoji-like wood screens covering the windows help to filter the harsh daylight, bringing a soft and gentle glow into the interiors instead. The aesthetic carries to the rest of the home, including the bathroom. It was designed with enough room in the shower stall to allow the homeowners to sit on a wooden stool while showering, not unlike what is practiced in Japanese onsens.
Design: Goy Architects
4. Scandinavian Meets Japanese in this Beautiful BTO
This 5-room BTO is an oasis of simplicity and Zen with its verdant greenery, light colour scheme, and surfaces and carpentry clad in pale-coloured raw veneer and plywood. The space feels bright and airy thanks to the fluted glass sliding doors, which were used in place of concrete walls to segregate the different zones. Terrazzo flooring in the communal zones adds a playful contrast.
The home centres around the island next to the kitchen, which is raised to bar height so it functions as much as a social space as an eating area. The custom-made piece features storage underneath. Designed with unobtrusive, minimalist handles, it is the perfect centrepiece for this minimalist Japandi home.
5. Natural Elements Play a Big Role in this Monochromatic Home
Like the homes featured here, this BTO flat is decked out in a minimal palette. Here, it is mainly black, white and grey. Raw textures and rustic touches in the form of wood and cement screed give the space added visual dimension and warmth. In the choice of furnishings and carpentry, clean and minimal lines were chosen for a soothing and calming appeal. The use of low-height furniture is also very much in tune with the Zen style.
While the communal spaces are mainly dark in tone, the private areas feature a lighter colour scheme, although not departing from its monochromatic palette. Rose gold finishes lend a luxurious slant and help to create a cosier vibe in the private quarters.
This article was originally posted on Renonation.sg, Singapore’s leading renovation and interior design site.