Less is more in a revamped HDB flat

Fully revamping a previously run-down HDB flat, AP Concept has designed a bright and comfortable home that’s well suited for a retired couple.

  • Less is more in a revamped HDB flat

Home Type: 5-room HDB flat

Floor Area: 1,292sqft

Text by Olha Romaniuk

When the owners of a five-room resale flat engaged AP Concept to deliver a full revamp of the unit, designers Aaron Poh and Victoria Khoo were faced with a challenging feat to transform the drab and basic layout into an inviting home that accommodated the owners as well as their frequent visitors (the owners’ children and grandchildren). “The clients wanted a full revamp and wanted us to design a spacious, bright and timeless unit that suited their lifestyle,” says Aaron.


To transform the unit into an airy and inviting home, the designers played with opacity and transparency to balance openness and privacy and used a consistent, light colour palette for the selection of the main materials to achieve the open, uncluttered look. For example, in the foyer, they used thin slivers of light beige PVC to create the Japanese-inspired panel screens that divide the main entry from the living room, while allowing light to filter in.

revamp 5-room flat with storage

Throughout the unit, the designers used similarly-coloured light-tone woodgrain and white laminates in matte finish to create a consistent and balanced look that aided the feeling of brightness and simplicity. As the owners desired a home that would be easy to maintain, the selected materials were chosen for their easy-to-clean properties that would retain their look and feel over the years.

revamp 5-room flat

In the kitchen, Aaron and Victoria expanded the existing space by knocking down one of the walls and using a glass divider between the dry and wet kitchen zones. They also incorporated a peninsula counter that could be used as the serving area to the adjacent dining room. Creating an open connection between the kitchen and the dining area allowed the designers to create an expanded social space where the owners could easily communicate with their family members in the dining room, while preparing food in the kitchen.

full-length wardrobe

Since the owners were downgrading in size from their previous landed property, storage considerations were important to ensure that the flat felt open and spacious, yet still accommodated the owners’ belongings. The designers integrated plenty of storage in all the rooms of the house, keeping the design of the cabinetry simple and clean so that they recede into the background.

murphy bed

For one of the guestrooms, the designers installed a Murphy bed within a storage wall. When not used to accommodate family members during overnight sleepovers, the bed can be folded up to keep the space roomy and uncluttered.

revamp 5-room flat

AP Concept

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