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Greek Inspired Beach Home In Woodlands

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Hi everyone!!

Finally decided to start a t-blog after reading so much from Renotalk for the past 2 months! We only started planning for our renovation after we got our key in June 2014. Didnt realise that it really takes a lot of time and effort to plan for a reno and I strongly advise anyone who have not started planning to start at least 2-3 months before the key collection. :sport-smiley-004:

We started off by deciding on the theme for our house. We browsed through many home design pictures on the internet which are of modern minimalist, scandinavian, industrial theme etc. They all look nice but none of the pics made us feel like.. OK! This is it! .... Therefore, we spent quite some time deciding on our theme. There were many changes to our initial ideas, themes and concepts along the way before we finally settled on Greek(Santorini) inspired beach theme.

WX (my fiance) and I both fell in love with Greece after we had our holiday there in Dec 2013. I have always love the beach, the sea, etc... and WX proposed to me on a beach in Green Island, Cairns... :wub: so we both feel that a Greek-inspired beach home has a special meaning for both of us. There are also other reasons for choosing this theme, such as WX likes blue and I like green, and since we will be living together, our place will comprise of blue-green (turquoise), which also fits in our Greek inspired beach theme. Also, I love to have wooden furniture in the house and so beach theme is a good choice for us!

In short, when this idea of Greek inspired beach theme came to our mind, both of us got very excited and we knew that Ok! This is it! This is the theme that we are looking for. :D

Edited by Yuooli9
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Our house is a 5 room BTO in Woodlands and I would say that we are already considered late in planning for our house reno.. most of my neighbours have either completed their reno or have already moved in... we are really taking our own sweet time!!!:dribble:

Anyway, here is our floor plan. It is a typical 5 room BTO, 110 sqm.


Edited by Yuooli9

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For the past 2 months, we were busy searching for the right IDs/contractors to put our dream into reality. These are the few IDs/contractors that we have met.

YY from Diamon tif Interior Design: Recommended by a friend. Quotation is the lowest among the rest. He used to work in Absolook Interior when he did my friend's reno. We did not choose him as we feel that he is now having an ID firm on his own, we are not sure if he can produce the same standard as he used to produce when he did my friend's reno.

Gavin from Summit Design Studio: Went to Summit because we read about the good reviews of Summit Design Studio in Renotalk. Gavin attended to us and we felt that he is a patient man. He showed no sign of impatience although he has not had his dinner and our meeting ended at about 9.30pm that day... :good: His quotation was also among the lowest. However, we did not choose him cos we eventually decided to go for a contractor rather than an ID.

Lauren Triston from Piuttosto Gallery: He is the master designer in Piuttosto and also show his enthusiasm in our reno by sending us msgs and pics on the ideas that we can have for the house even before we sign with him. However, we did not choose him as we eventually decided to go for a contractor rather than an ID. I find that his design has a bit of a different feel than others and I feel that his strength is mostly on modern minimalist. May have signed with him if our theme is a modern theme. :good:

Jia Wei: Saw his name on Renotalk by forumers. Hmm... we did not sign with him as we did not click with him. (For anyone who is interested to know the detail, feel free to PM me) Furthermore, he emailed us a few days after our meet-up that he is unable to take on our project due to some unforeseen circumstance... :dunno:

Mr K from H2O (contractor): Popular in Renotalk. The only person who gives us the confidence that he is able to produce the "Greek" feel in our house reno. I also feel that I will not have to worry too much if I engaged him as my contractor, as he has too many good reviews in Renotalk. However, as his quotation exceeded our budget, we have no choice but to drop him....

Alan Tan from AIAN Furniture and Reno (contractor): Popular in Renotalk. Our 2nd choice after Mr K. He was the ONLY person who requested to have our first meet up at our new house. While we are telling him our requirements, he was taking the

measurement and giving us suggestions. We find him very hands on and practical. The reason why he is our 2nd choice and not the 1st is because he did not give us the confidence that Mr K gave. However, we also understand that Greek-inspired beach theme is not a theme that many IDs/ contractors are familiar with, so it is understandable why we felt that way. Secondly, he did not respond to our Whatsapp group msg after our first meet-up, so we were thinking that he may not be easily contactable if we were to sign with him. However, just b4 we gave up on Alan, he msg WX privately to request for our email add so that he can send the quotation to us. We then gathered that he may not know who the person in the group chat are as he is too busy to check against the names that he has saved in his contact.

So after the meet-ups with the IDs/contractors mentioned above, we have decided to engage a contractor instead of an ID because we have a strong idea in our reno design and we felt uncomfortable when IDs tried to change our idea. Therefore, to save ourselves from struggling between ideas, we decided to engage a contractor. Alan Tan is our chosen contractor as we found him to be an honest and straight forward person. He is very practical and will advise you against works that he viewed as unnecessary. He will rather not earn the money than to persuade you to do things that you may not need. However, he will still leave it to you to decide. This is our impression of him after 3 rounds of meet up. Will share more of our experience with him in time to come!! :sport-smiley-018:

Edited by Yuooli9

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The next thing we did was space planning.

We actually had a few rounds of changes before the final one. Our greatest headache is finding a place to put our dining table. Initially wanted to put the dining table at the behind the sofa, however, we changed our mind as we felt that there may not have enough space there for us to have our meal comfortably. :(

Our next choice is to put the dining table next to the shoe cabinet. However, we changed our mind after an ID told us that usually people will not put their dining table there as they do not like the sight of the dining table when they return home and open the main door.... we also agreed to his view.... so another change again... :bangwall:

Our last decision is to place the dining table in front of the bomb shelter. We didnt want it there at the very beginning because we think that the dining bench/chair may obstruct the swing of the bomb shelter door...

talking about this bomb shelter....

I seriously suspect that HDB has made a mistake in designing the position of the bomb shelter door for the entire project!! Cos by placing the bomb shelter door there, it is as good as wasting the entire space that is in front of the door bcos hardly anything could be placed there without blocking the swing of the door.... :o Moreover, the other project (Woodlands Dew) that is launched at the same time as ours has its bomb shelter door facing the passageway, unlike ours!!! This allows the resident to place their dining table in front of the kitchen entrance, against the bomb shelter wall, without blocking anything. :~

Another point about the bomb shelter, notice the 2 air ventilation holes there? Most of my friends had only 1 hole facing the living room. The other is usually in the kitchen so that it is not noticeable by guests. However, our project has 2 ventilation holes facing the living room! :o:o Therefore I have all the reasons to think that this is a wrong design by HDB. :~

Ok, think I have complained enough about the bomb shelter... We eventually decided to place our dining table in front of the bomb shelter door as drawn in the pic below as we cant find a better place to put it. Anyway, we usually wont open the bomb shelter door when we are having our meal, just that we have to push the dining chairs in diligently everytime we finished our meal...

Enough said, here is the picture of our space planning. Please ignore the crosses and circles in red. Those are actually the locations of the power sockets and switches which are not drawn accurately... :P



Edited by Yuooli9

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Detailed renovation works as below:


1.1 To apply HDB renovation permit

1.2 To provide design concepts and site co-ordination

1.3 To provide chemical wash(2 times)

1.4 To upload materials and clear all debris off site

1.5 To supply labour & materials to lay cover sheet protection.


2.1 Cabinet base for both side.

2.2 Cement screening for one side small kitchen wall.

2.3 Top/ bottom kitchen cabinet with dish tray/ drawer/ soft closing hinges and ABS trimming for sink and stove area, including full height cabinet.

2.4 Bottom kitchen cabinet with drawer/ soft closing hinges and ABS trimming including bar counter support.

2.5 Solid surface work top for new kitchen cabinet including bar counter support

2.6 To supply labour to install sink and connect sink.

2.7 To supply labour to install hob and cooker.

2.8 Tempered back splash glass in between top/bottom kitchen cabinet.

2.9 Tempered swing glass door for kitchen entrance.


3.1 4 nos. of top ceiling pillar strips at foyer area.

3.2 full height laminated shoe cabinet at foyer area.

3.3 Full height feature wall.

3.4 T.V console

3.5 Low storage cabinet seatee with side table

3.6 L box for living room area.

3.7 Lay brick wall tiles up to ceiling height.

3.8 Change and extend cabinet at foyer area


4.1 To supply & install wall to wall mirror.

4.2 Dismantle existing washing basin


5.1 To construct 50mm shower kerb.

5.2 Low suspended storage cabinet.

5.3 Hollow block wall between dry and wet area with cement screening.


6.1 To supply labour & materials to ran add pipe to connect to gas heater.

6.2 To supply labour to install 02 nos of hand spray tap.

6.3 To supply labour to install accessories for 02 bathroom and kitchen.


7.1 To supply & install gypsum board to level uneven wall

7.2 To supply & fabricate laminated finish full height alum sliding frosted glass door wardrobe

7.3 To supply & fabricate laminated finish dressing table with drawer and mirror.


8.1 To supply & fabricate laminated finish full height alum sliding frosted glass door wardrobe


9.1 To hack off existing wall between living room and bedroom 3.

9.2 To make good smooth surface with cement screening after hacking wall.

9.3 False beam support in order to install glass.

9.4 Tempered L shape fixed panel glass .

9.5 Tempered swing glass door for bedroom 3 entrance.

9.6 To supply & install L box design .


10.1 To supply labour and material to paint with ICI/Nippon emulsion paint for whole unit with max 06 colors. Includes : Doors, doors frame, piping, ceiling and wall. ( with 01 layer of sealer coating)


11.1 To supply & install alum window grilles for whole unit.

Total cost: Around 32.5k

Edited by Yuooli9

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If you have been reading the detailed works line by line, you will have noticed that flooring is not included. :yeah:

Initially, WX and I wanted to use wooden-looking tiles for our flooring. We felt that tiles can last longer and do not have issues such as prone to scratches, not resistant to water, termites attack, emission of fumes..and so on. We went to two tile suppliers, namely Hafary and Soon Bee Huat and had actually set our mind on the tiles that we like.

However, at the back of my mind, I still prefer the feel that vinyl or timber flooring gives and this is one thing that tiles do not have. Have heard a lot of ppl who uses HERF (High End Resilient Flooring) from Evorich and I like the physical and aesthetic feel that HERF gives. My only concern for HERF is the emission of fumes as it is also considered a type of vinyl flooring. WX is fine with either tiles or HERF. Therefore, just before our 2nd meet up with Alan, we decided to take a look at Evorich showroom.

We were served by James who is very patient and helpful in explaining to us the benefits of using HERF, and also to clear our doubts on the concerns that we have. He even burned a sample of the HERF in front of us and I remembered sniffing around for the smell that is emitted. Strangely to say, there isnt much smell from the HERF except for the smell of the thinner that James used to start the fire. :sport-smiley-004:

And so, our doubt was cleared and we were more or less determined to sign our flooring work with Evorich, especially when we were told that we can get it at expo fair price as they are having a fair at expo now. :good: In the end, we went to Expo last Sunday and had placed a deposit of $500 on HERF flooring. Yeah! :dancingqueen: Now we just have to wait for our turn for HDB to do the cement screed, which may take about 3- 4 weeks.

For those who are interested in HERF, Evorich is having a fair at Expo from now till 7 Sept (Sun)!! They are selling at $6.50/sqf (excluding GST) at Expo price but they can give a lower price than that if you bargain for it. :notti:

Edited by Yuooli9

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Haha yup! From woodlands meadow!

I like the santorini beach theme, will follow ur to blog to see how it turns out.

Wishing u smooth Reno ya! :)

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Haha yup! From woodlands meadow!

I like the santorini beach theme, will follow ur to blog to see how it turns out.

Wishing u smooth Reno ya! :)

Thanks! I am keeping my finger crossed! =)


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