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This Hougang HDB Flat Looks Like Plain Vanilla’s Katong Cafe

9 October 2023 | BY

This Hougang Ave 10 HDB flat is evocative of Plain Vanilla’s Katong cafe, trailing the lines between wabi-sabi and Japandi.

Cover image

In our quest for the perfect home, it’s no longer just about a certain theme. It’s about ambience, the atmosphere, and the personality we imbue into our living spaces. And for some, comfort is the cosy, inviting interior of a cafe with the smell of fresh brew wafting through the air – so it’s only natural for some of us to replicate those cafe vibes at home.

Designed by INTR studio, this Hougang Ave 10 HDB flat beautifully trails the lines between wabi-sabi and Japandi. The final result: a gorgeous, earthy home with a cafe-worthy kitchen. 

A kitchen that looks like a Plain Vanilla store

Hougang HDB 2Image credit: INTR Studio, Plain Vanilla

Enter the flat and you’ll first be greeted by a dry kitchen that bears an uncanny resemblance to the display counter area of Plain Vanilla’s Katong cafe. Unlike typical rectangular islands, this one boasts a square design with a clever quadrant cut-out, providing effortless access to everything on the counter. The tiled base of the island also creates a clear visual demarcation that makes the kitchen itself look like an accent feature.Hougang HDB 3Image credit: INTR Studio

Another intriguing design choice is the use of wood laminates in the pantry, creating the illusion of it being seamlessly integrated into a niche. The dry kitchen, complete with the island, cleverly conceals ample hidden storage, a valuable feature in any HDB space.

Hougang HDB 4Image credit: INTR Studio

Beyond the wood-framed fluted glass partition, the wet kitchen continues the “built-into-niche” concept with a matching matte tile backsplash, creating a seamless and cohesive look throughout the home.

Hues of grey, cream and brown make up the colour palette for this home, and give it an earthy, cosy ambience. Rich pops of colour from the copper cookware also bring a touch of elegance to the entire kitchen.

Wabi-sabi living room with dining nook

Hougang HDB 5Image credit: INTR Studio

It’s full-on wabi-sabi in the adjacent living room with lots of curved lines and limewash paint. The dining nook breaks the monotony with a terracotta-coloured 2-tone wall, making the area look a lot brighter. The addition of wabi-sabi roller blinds also helps give the room a diffused glow.

Hougang HDB 6Image credit: INTR Studio

The micro-cement dining bench paired with the terracotta table top creates an al-fresco ambiance in the dining area, making it seem as though you’re dining on a balcony or patio.

Cafe-worthy common bathroom

Hougang HDB 7Image credit: INTR Studio

Another area in this home that is on the money in terms of its cafe vibe, is the common bathroom. We love the tiled arch feature, cloud-like pedestal sink and wall-mounted faucet that makes the entire space look like it could be the toilet of an aesthetic cafe.

Minimal hotel-esque master bedroom

Hougang HDB 8Image credit: INTR Studio

The private quarters of this home are just as stunning as the rest of the house, and we love how everything is minimal from the choice of upholstery and soft furnishing to the statement wall sconces that give the room a desert-lodge boutique hotel vibe.

Hougang HDB 9Image credit: INTR Studio

In the master bathroom, colourful terrazzo tiles inject a vibrant burst of character into the home, offering a delightful departure from the subdued tones that dominate the space. In sum, the interior of this home strikes a harmonious balance between inviting excitement and cultivating a tranquil sense of serenity, making it a truly captivating and inviting place to call home.

Hougang HDB flat that looks like a Plain Vanilla cafe

In a city where cafe-hopping can be a costly indulgence, the owners of this Hougang HDB have made a clever investment to recreate the cafe experience right within their own home. By skillfully blending the essence of wabi-sabi, Japandi and a medley of other influences, they’ve crafted a sweet and inviting retreat where every moment feels like a cosy escape. 

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Cover image adapted from: INTR Studio

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