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Beautiful Spanish Revival Home Wins Qanvast Design Award
Interior designers are trained to think creatively and spatially - that's a given. But with thousands of interior design firms across Malaysia, finding the right one for your home renovation project can be overwhelming. To simplify the process for you, we have created the Qanvast Design Awards to recognise outstanding renovation projects by trusted interior firms.
One of this year's winners is Dot Works and its winning renovation project; a 3-bedroom condominium in Kuala Lumpur. We had a chat with Jake Chow, founder of Dot Works to learn more about the process involved in designing a charming Spanish Revival-style home for his clients and their 3 cats.
Qanvast: Tell us about this home and the homeowners' request for this project
Jake Chow (JC): This 1,400 square foot apartment is owned by a couple in their 30s. They had rented this apartment for a few years before purchasing it. As they enjoy collecting vintage pieces, they requested a Spanish Revival style for the home renovation.
The couple lives with their 3 cats, hence pet-friendly features were also taken into consideration in the design of this home.
Q: What major changes were made to the home to achieve the look?
JC: Spanish revival design often pays homage to history and maintains vintage elements throughout the space. To achieve this, we incorporated arched windows, nooks, and doors, as well as exposed wooden beams on the ceiling, to give the home a worn, aged feel. It works beautifully with the rest of the vintage loose furnishing that we have chosen for this home. Some of the furnishings are 30 or 40 years old and have been reconditioned to fit the home's Spanish revival design.
Dealing with the lack of natural light was one of the biggest issues that we faced when renovating this home. Because this is an old property (I believe it’s more than 10 years old) the home features plenty of small rooms or compartments. To make the home look more spacious and brighter, we removed one of the kitchen walls to create an open kitchen concept. We also replaced the original kitchen window and door with a semi-curved window and door to create a more rustic look.
When we renovated the home, the wooden floor that came with the house was still in good condition so we advised the client not to replace it to save money. The timber flooring looked almost brand new after we buffered and refinished them. We did, however, replace all the tile flooring found in the living room, dining room and bathroom.
To create that Spanish Revival vibe in the bathroom, we installed terracotta tiles on the bathroom floor and on the recessed compartment wall in the shower area. These bright-coloured patterned tiles bring a dash of colour and personality to the bathroom.
Q: You mentioned that the homeowners have 3 cats. What kind of pet-friendly features did you include in this home?
JC: To make the home cat-friendly, we installed mesh into the windows to prevent the cats from jumping out. The homeowners prefer their cats to run around the house, so we didn't create a special sleeping or playing area for them. We did, however, construct pet flap doors (in the kitchen door, for example) to allow the cats to enter or cross the various sections of the house.
Q: What were your favourite design elements found in this home, and why?
JC: I particularly like the arch and glass door that divides the living and the dining room. I personally think that the arched glass partition creates a beautiful design statement for the home, especially when you enter the room through the entrance.
Q: What was the colour combination chosen for this project?
JC: The main colour used for this home is white or grey. Apart from these neutral tones, we also used some colourful tones that match with the Spanish Revival design on little details like the furniture, bathroom tiles, and so on, to highlight the space.
Q: Have you had any issues during the renovation process? If so, how were they resolved?
JC: Yes, we did face some difficulties during the renovation process. Because Spanish Revival is not a very common design style found in Malaysian homes, finding the right materials especially for the furniture was a challenge.
It also took us a bit more time to complete the project because some of the furniture was imported from Indonesia. We also sought the help of a local carpenter to custom-make furniture in the style we desired because we couldn't find some of the pieces we wanted in stores.
Q: What are your thoughts on the final result of this project?
JC: I'm delighted that my clients are very happy with the outcome of this home renovation. Through our project photos, we wanted to capture the happiness/enjoyment of the homeowners after staying in their newly renovated home and how the ‘new’ home has improved their quality of life.
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