New Digs

Visit the homes of social media expert Pat Law, film-maker Royston Tan and chef Emmanuel Stroobant

Three tastemakers show Life their new homes, done up in their personal styles: Social media expert Pat Law goes for the industrial chic look, film-maker Royston Tan’s home is a retro homage to the 1960s and chef Emmanuel Stroobant and his wife Edina Hong have chosen a loft-like look for their semi-detached home.

An oasis away from work

One day in May last year, digital marketing expert Pat Law left her office for lunch and came back a home owner.

There had been a mid-day bank auction for distressed properties near her office and, on a whim, she attended.

Some grainy, low-resolution pictures of a beat-up, third-storey apartment in the east caught her eye. And because she had been considering investing in a home to live in, the idea of a freehold old-fashioned walk-up with the potential for dramatic refurbishment appealed to her.

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Moved by nostalgia

In the morning, the leaves of a large angsana tree cast dancing shadows across the floor.

Award-winning film-maker Royston Tan, 39, best known for his films 15 (2003), 4:30 (2005) and 881 (2007), sits by a row of windows on a dove-grey sofa, watching the sunlight move to the sounds of a Billie Holiday record playing from a vintage Precedent TV console.

"Sometimes when I feel unmotivated, when I ask myself, 'Why are you still creating?', nature casts this light and this," he says, gesturing to the shadows and the curated space around him, "with some music in the background, gets me going again. This is cinema to me."

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Spaces for young and old

Chef Emmanuel Stroobant and his wife Edina Hong spend hours at work together for most of the week, so when it came to doing up their new two-storey house, it was important they carved out their own personal spaces.

Ms Hong, 43, says: "As we work so closely together all the time, we really need our own 'me-time' to get away and recharge."

The couple run the Emmanuel Stroobant Group, which manages seven food and beverage brands ranging from fine-dining restaurants such as Saint Pierre under the Emmanuel Stroobant Group Luxury Collection, to mid- and casual- dining restaurants such as Brussels Sprouts in Robertson Quay.

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