If one needed any proof of Singapore's cachet as a hotspot for world-class furniture design, one would only need to observe the selection of top-notch brands and renowned designers that have planted their proverbial flags on our island. We highlight six luxury purveyors of stylish living that you should have in your contact list.
Manchester-born Timothy Oulton credits his passion for designing furniture to his father, Major Phillip Oulton, who initiated him into the family business selling antiques three decades ago. According to Oulton, his signature classic English style was inspired by his stay in a traditional English boarding school, Ampleforth, in an old Benedictine monastery when he was seven. Pieces in his showroom feature lush leather prepared in traditional techniques and handcrafted by traditional furniture makers. The 5,000 sq ft gallery in Singapore is spread over two levels of a conservation shophouse. Aside from the collection of sofas, desks and armchairs, visitors can also view interesting wall art formed by vintage ornaments such as flags, cricket bats and wooden tennis rackets. Oulton's first Southeast Asian boutique in Singapore is his third flagship in the world, following the ones in Los Angeles, New York and Barbados.
81/83 Kim Yam Road, Tel: 6737 6883
Having been featured in a string of Hollywood blockbusters such as 007 - Tomorrow Never Dies, The Devil Wears Prada, The Thomas Crown Affair as well as Charlie's Angles 2, Christopher Guy's furniture designs are highly coveted by celebrities and the affluent in the United States. Born in Britain and raised in Spain and France, Guy now resides in Singapore. The designer, who is the creator of the patented Chris-X (pronounced 'kris-kros') design, spent the last three years here before deciding to embark on establishing a 10,000-square foot showroom at the top of High Street Centre. The sprawling space is a level above his headquarters and affords impressive views of the surrounding landmarks such as Victoria Concert Hall, Marina Bay Sands and Old Parliament House. According to Guy, the exclusive space is by-invite only and will feature his hand-carved solid mahogany wood furniture in a high-tech setting.
1 North Bridge Road, #29-01 High Street Centre, Tel: 6235 6253
Recognised as the menswear designer producing the world's most expensive and luxurious suits (US$30,000), Florence-born Ricci has been helming the fashion label for the last 30 years, and branched out into designing homewares with son Filippo two years ago. In line with the opulent designs and rich materials used for his apparel collections, Ricci's homeware features fine silver, porcelain and pure Italian silk in diningware and drapery. Ricci's homeware gallery at his eponymous boutique in Marina Bay Sands, the first of its kind outside of Florence, is styled to resemble a real dining room, and is decked in a decadent blend of walnut shelving finished in high gloss finish, and floors laid with Italian travertine marble. Homeowners can also commission Ricci to design the interiors of their domain with his characteristic flair.
#B1/75 The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 10, Bayfront Avenue, Tel: 6634 1093
Kelly Hoppen MBE
South African-born British designer Kelly Hoppen is one of the few female designers to be conferred a knighthood as Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to Interior Design. Fans of Hoppen's elegant style and flair for muted colours include David and Victoria Beckham. Aside from her eponymous design studio, which provides interior design services for private residences, yachts and the first-class cabins on board British Airway's, Hoppen also founded a design school where enthusiasts can learn design basics. Aside from her collection of furniture, Hoppen also designs home accessories, furniture, taps, illumination, rugs, fabrics, wallcoverings, bed linen, candles as well as room fragrances. The designer's local store-in-store gallery features over thirty pieces of vintage inspired living and dining designs such as sofas, dining furniture and bespoke cushions, just to name a few.
Curio Home Accents Block 14-C Dempsey Rd, Tel: 6479 7619
Space Furniture has spent the last decade educating and inspiring local consumers to be house-proud and discerning with their furniture appointments. Relocating from its former location tucked in a corner of Millenia Walk, Space Furniture's new home is set within one of the few remaining colonial bungalows in the heart of the city. Occupying a whopping 43,000 sq ft of space, the heritage site has been redesigned by architects Wong Mun Summ and Richard Hassell from WOHA. According to Syddal Wee, GM of Space Furniture (Asia), the new site which costs $50 million to develop is the only purpose-built showroom of its kind in the region. The venue will showcase the works of design masters such as Gerri Reitveld and Louis Poulsen from collections by brands such as B&B Italia, Cassina and Kartell among others. "Customers can look forward to our enhanced experience in terms of size, and presentation level not matched anywhere else in Asia," says Wee. "That includes a multi-sensory experience shopping, with each of the three units having its own distinct indentity."
77 Bencoolen Street, Tel: 6415 0000
In a move to offer a wider range to its customers, the name synonymous with luxury furniture in Singapore recently expanded to larger premises. From its previous 1,800 sq ft space near the Singapore River, Mod.Living's new contemporary showroom is now spread over a 5,000 sq ft unit located at the foot of Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. The prime location is ideal for showing off collections by established designers, such as Marco Zanuso, Umberto Asnage and Leigh Harmer, as well as brands such as FEG-Salvarani, Moroso and Globe Zero 4 amidst the scenic views of the lush greenery and beautiful horizon.
215 Upper Bukit Timah, #02-00, Tel: 6336 2286
This article is adapted from 'Red Hot', published in Singapore Tatler Homes August-September 2011 issue. Photography: Boon Wei, Beebox