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This is anything but boxed in

This is anything but boxed in

Designed with a contemporary gridded form, the aptly named Living Grid House by L Architects deals with Singapore’s tropical climate in a clever manner.

Sentosa Cove is one of Singapore’s most coveted neighbourhoods, set in verdant streetscapes and providing a sanctuary-like environment for the residents who live here. It’s also an area where one can find impressive contemporary architecture, like this striking home designed by L Architects.

The two-storey home doesn’t have to rely on a high front fence to keep prying eyes at bay. It features a distinctive grid-like façade, with a series of 800 by 800-millimetre cuboids shielding the home’s generous glazing – something that can be problematic with Singapore’s tropical climate.

Living Grid House

So rather than shrouding the house with established trees, there’s a grid of window boxes, well endowed with ferns and tropical plants that screen the sunlight. This structure, which is illuminated at night, is self-watering and also provides drainage, and is an alternative to the green wall, introduced into our lives by Patrick Blanc.

It was seen as a device for protecting not only the living areas at ground level, but also the two bedrooms on the first floor, designed to align with the eaves of this house. “A space is more than a sum of its parts. It has the potential to enhance the way we live and go beyond what we are familiar with,” says architect Lim Shing Hui, director of L Architects.

Living Grid House

Although there’s a permanent green veil across the home’s façade, the design is considerably more than a clever idea across the façade, one that includes a porte-cochere that creates a striation of sunlight across the entrance.

The open plan kitchen and living areas are as considered, with generous timber joinery and thoughtful detailing, including a marble chopping board that forms part of the kitchen’s island bench. And while the spaces are open and fluid, there’s a slight change of level between the dining and living area, creating a certain ‘70s vibe.

Living Grid House

However, whether the owners are relaxing in the living areas or greeting the day (there are blinds in bedrooms and bathrooms for additional privacy and sun control), there’s a sense of living with nature, far from the bustle of central Singapore.

Living Grid House
Living Grid House

Project details

Architecture & interiors – L Architects
Photography – Finbarr Fallon

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Stephen Crafti

Stephen Crafti is a leading architecture and design writer with more than 40 books to his name. He has been writing about design and architecture since the early 1990s. Inspired by the architecture around him in Melbourne, Australia, he is keen to share the things he sees so he started Architours, which run architectural private tours four times a year through some of Melbourne’s best and often award-winning homes.