Kinrara home Retreat
Photographs © Idzwan Junaidi
My Dream Home 2016 Terraced Category GOLD Award – haven The Edge
A creative low budget remodelling project of an intermediate terrace house in Kinrara, Selangor, Malaysia
The small intermediate terrace home running at 20′ x 60′ is situated in Kinrara, the suburb hilly medium density residential area 40 minutes away from the city of KL. The brief called for converting this small 3+1 bedroomed house into a contemporary living space which caters not just the needs of the owner’s living lifestyle but also to showcase his small private contemporary art collection.
design – process + philosophy
It is utmost challenging when working on project that given a minimal budget but with maximum freedom in design. The exisitng home was a typical medium cost intermediate linked unit part of the mass housings built in late 90’s. The houses built then often catered the mass by having many possible bedrooms within available space but often compromised on its spatial quality. As the society progresses, the needs and expectations change, number of bedrooms one house has is no longer relevant, instead priority is placed now on the quality of spaces within it and theirs flexibilities to meet individual’s needs.
Rehabilitating the abandoned Backyard was the idea that initiated the concept of the project. The original walls at lower floor that originally made one bedroom, toilet and kitchen were stripped off completely to create a new open plan space that draws visual focus only to the backyard where the only daylight comes from. The new ground floor living now accommodates one big luxurious living area, a study/ working corner, a dining bar and an open small kitchen. A new 2-storey high cement finished brick walls is erected on the rear site boundary, not only to frame the newly revived backyard garden but also to filter the harsh daylight into the open ground floor. In reverse, it portrays like a panoramic cinema screen to the new open ground floor living where high definition picturesque forest garden is projected onto.
The new full double height glazing door and window separating the house with the backyard garden, blurs the rear building outline and makes the new rear courtyard garden dramatic as like a well lit aquarium garden that lights up the entire ground floor living. In another perspective, the new backyard garden presents an atmospheric ambience to the lower floor that feels like underground sunken living spaces.
An open air powder room is tucked in at one corner of the rear courtyard garden, with full views to the trees of the garden making toilet activities a joyful experience within the nature.
On the upper floor, another one existing bedroom is stripped off and half of its floor slab is hacked off to create a void above the study/working area at the floor below, thus allows maximum daylight floods onto. Laundry and ironing activities are moved to upper floor next to the void area behind a sheer curtain, creating a cozy reading corner which is naturally lit all day coupled with views to backyard trees, making laundry activity a romantic affair instead to the inhabitant.
The new 2-storey height metal sliding glass door next to the study/working area opening to the secured backyard allowing natural ventilation to both lower and upper floors all days.
Remodelling is not merely to upgrade the aesthetic appearance of a building but to re-evaluate the potential of existing spaces, to re-discover the essence in them, re-configure them with touches of creativities, re-intepret the way of living in and finally to re-present the inhabitants with new spatial experiences that they never thought it could exist.