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This 70s HDB Bathroom Layout Is Making a Return in BTO Flats

August 4, 2020
BOOKMARK

A blast from the past for sure, but not quite the same.

If you’ve ever visited or lived at your grandparents’ HDB flat when you were a kid, bathrooms like this might be a familiar sight:

King George's Avenue by Omni Design

Interior Firm: Omni Design

Mei Ling Street by Urban Home Design 二本設計家

Yup, loos with separate showers, vanities and toilets are now making a comeback in today’s homes – and it’s no surprise, really. After all, everything from retro songs to popular movies are getting a second turn under the limelight these days, so why not interior design concepts from the past?

That said, like remixes and reboots, these bathrooms aren’t quite the same as they used to be. Got you intrigued? Well, here’s a closer look at how they’ve been reinvented in HDB homes today.

Tiong Poh Road by Third Avenue Studio
bathroom layout HDB retro BTO

Interior Firm: Third Avenue Studio

Trust us when we say that the details are what make the difference between a regular old bathroom and one that’s trendy – and it’s a fact that interior designers, like Third Avenue Studio, are keenly aware of as well.

For this heritage apartment at Tiong Poh Road, both halves of the bathroom and its external vanity were given a refresh with brand-new layers of mosaic tiles, which in turn delivers a high contrast look that also helps bring out a retro-contemporary vibe.

Kallang Bahru (Block 65) by i-Chapter
Kallang Bahru (Block 65) by i-Chapter

Interior Firm: i-Chapter

Similarly, i-Chapter’s focus on the finer aspects of bathroom design helps greatly in updating the look and feel of this Kallang apartment’s WC and shower zones for modern times.

Here, a combination of pebblewash floors, stony-grey tiles, and faux greenery re-creates the appealing rusticity of a holiday resort in an HDB flat setting, while also ensuring overall visual consistency.

Layout and feature tweaks for improved accessibility

bathroom layout HDB retro BTO

Interior Firm: KDOT

Given that bathrooms are functional spaces, it makes sense that a visual refresh alone doesn’t count as a full revamp. Furthermore, in the case of these segregated bathrooms, one could say that specially-tailored solutions are a necessity in order for a renovation to be counted as sufficiently unique.

It’s also why KDOT’s idea of having a frosted glass sliding door is worth taking note of. For one, it’s a handy way to shield off whichever half of the bathroom is in use. Second, it leaves enough space for the walkway and vanity on the outside.

bathroom layout HDB retro BTO

Interior Firm: Archive Design

Meanwhile, Archive Design took things one step further in this bachelor pad at Mei Ling Vista by knocking down the walls between both halves of its bathroom, yet leaving just enough to create a small nook for privacy around WC.

In addition, the vanity area on the outside received an upgrade in the form of a sliding mirror which doubles as a privacy screen that keeps prying eyes away.

And then, there’s the modern-day take on the concept for BTO flats…

Bukit Batok West Avenue by Space Atelier

Interior Firm: Space Atelier

In most modern-day HDB flats, common bathrooms and en suites are located along the same corridor and they typically come with a shower, toilet and vanity, all within the same space. However, that isn’t to say that the segregated bathroom concept is dead in BTO homes.

As a matter of fact, more homeowners – especially young couples – are transforming their en suites into either WC-only or shower-only spaces. But you’re probably wondering, why go to the effort and expense of re-configuring a bathroom in such a manner?

Circuit Road by Habit

Interior Firm: Habit

The advantages are two-fold: On one hand, you get dedicated bathroom zones with more privacy and less odour, and on the other, these shower-only/WC-only spaces aren’t as small as the enclosed areas of older HDB flats, which translates into a more comfortable time when taking care of hygiene matters. As for downsides, the biggest one is probably having to live with one less shower or WC to use at home.

So, what do you think? Would you adopt this new take on the segregated bathroom concept for your BTO home? Let us know!


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