The Ritz-Carlton, Shangri-La, Four Seasons, Jumeirah, and more recently, JW Marriott Qufu: these and more are among the many luxury hospitality brands with hotels designed by LTW Designworks, a Singapore-based firm founded by HL Lim.
When it comes to designing his home, however, the designer is quick to drop the term ‘luxury’. Instead, he says, the primary quality behind every design decision for his home is comfort.
“The building and design of the house shouldn’t be considered ‘luxury’. A house needs to be comfortable to suit its purpose,” Lim tells Home Journal. “I’ve always designed with a sense of place, and with the location of the house I wanted to create a tropical home. The site’s natural surroundings became my primary inspiration.”
Situated on a leafy, hilltop location, the three-storey abode receives an ample amount of privacy in spite of its numerous openings, from the multiple doorways on ground level, the massive windows lining almost every side of the structure, and the outdoor pool and patio. Thanks to these features, much of the surrounding environment – including views of the Singapore skyline – naturally become part of the home.
The resort-like home, as Lim describes, is certainly replete with comfortable qualities. Large, cosy sofas furnish the living room, along with “armchairs made from woven plastic instead of rattan, as they are more comfortable and easier to maintain.”
Other accessories include mementos from travels to India, Egypt, Africa, and other places around the globe. “No items in the main living areas are too precious, so we don’t have to be extra cautious when moving between the spaces,” says Lim.
“What we value most is the living experience itself, so it’s important for us to feel completely at ease when we are at home.”
The house also has four bedrooms, each with an en suite bathroom; as well, there’s a helpers’ quarters and bathroom, and two powder rooms on the first and third floors.
Highlighting the abode’s immense volume are the overhanging bridge and walkway that run across the upper areas of the home – just one of Lim’s favourite features of the house.
Outside, the garden is home to various fruit tress: bananas, papayas, and avocadoes. Lim credits his wife Christine for managing the ‘greener’ areas of the home.
A notable design element is the commissioned wooden feature wall found in the living room. Occupying the full height of the house – all three storeys – the installation is by a Beijing-based art studio that LTW Designworks has long collaborated with for several hotel projects.
“When viewed from afar, it resembles the image of one’s palms gently pressed – a symbolic representation of protection, shelter and well-being,” says Lim. “We gave their artists the freedom to create any pattern they wanted. The stunning piece combines many wooden cubes stacked at different angles.” As a result, a different look emerges from the piece when viewed from different standpoints.
Incidentally, the living space – in full view of the massive installation – is Lim’s favourite part of the home. “I love winding down in the living room after a particularly long day and taking in the unobstructed view of the Singapore skyline,” says the designer.