Surrounded by lush greenery and hilly areas, hiking may be the only thing that comes to mind when you think of Taman Melawati. But the town near Kuala Lumpur (KL) is a tranquil enclave that hides many gems like this newly-built three-storey bungalow.

Owned by a Malaysian family of four, they were looking for a fresh design incorporating both a wet and dry kitchen, along with a formal living area without a television. 

“The owner wanted to keep to a clean and contemporary style; he didn't want anything too complicated, yet he requested that the space should be stylish at the same time,” says Yu Xuan, one of the lead designers from PINS Studio tasked with the renovation of the 5,367 sq ft house.

Yu Xuan and Zhi Zhi, the lead designers from PINS studio for this project

Over seven months, the bungalow with five bedrooms and six bathrooms was transformed into a sleek contemporary abode that boasts plenty of breathing space.

"The house is modern, minimalist and luxurious all in one," concludes Yu Xuan.

Scroll through the gallery below (photography by Pixelaw Photography) to see more of this dark-hued sanctuary:

To meet the design brief, the team proposed a sophisticated aesthetic with a masculine theme, using deep wood tones and shades of black as the main colour palette. The matte black built-in cabinet was custom-made with laminate from EDL.

While the leather sofas look like they could have come from the same collection, they were actually sourced from three different brands – Australian company King Living, Singapore upholstery specialist Abitex Sofas and Taiwanese furniture retailer TEKNI.

With the long layout of the house, the team decided to use semi-open display panels to divide the living area and dry kitchen. This idea wasn't in the books originally, but the designers felt that closing off the corridor does not do justice to the bar area.

“The main challenge when we were designing the house was deciding how to bring a different experience to the person who’s going to stay in the house, how the tone of colours changes from one space to another,” says Yu Xuan.

A gradient approach using different shades of dark tones along with polished surfaces in light grey and white are infused strategically throughout the interior to ensure that the overall effect isn't too sombre. Daylight is also taken into account to balance the light and dark contrasts.

Yu Xuan’s favourite area is the pretty much the entire first floor. “The experience moving from the living area to the dry kitchen to the dining area is very good and it provides different pocket space for different activities,” he explains. “The subtle change from wooden tones to marble is, I think, a very nice touch.”

This delightful mix of comfortability and sophistication pervades the rest of the home, as seen in this master bedroom. A feature wall, a twist to the typical "barcode design", adds visual interest without deviating from the theme of minimalism.

The ensuite bathroom was entirely remodelled. The homeowners wanted a walk-in wardrobe, but as the original space was very tight, the designers decided to hack down all the walls to create an open-concept bathroom. A translucent black glass piece was installed to divide the area between the washroom and wardrobe to maintain some privacy and separation between the two spaces.

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