What is that one architectural feature in every home that often defines the house as a home?
What if we were to tell you that one singular feature was none other than the balcony? That simple, outdoor space that allows natural light and a breathtaking view is perhaps synonymous with luxury and the contemporary classical look.
Mostly seen in contemporary and classically designed houses, the balcony has slowly made its way into several modern homes and eventually into some of Singapore’s many hdb homes and condominiums; with a few modifications.
Traditionally, the balcony is designed for many purposes, one of which is to act as an extra space for outdoor activities since many some homeowners, particularly those living in condominiums and hdb homes, have little to almost no space for a yard. It can also provide, as mentioned earlier, natural light and fresh air while being shaded from the sun. However many homeowners and designers alike are starting to see the potential of a balcony being more than what it normally is.
That being said, here are several balcony ideas Singapore designers employ in order to make the most out of the simple balcony.
1. LOUNGING LIVING ROOM
Let’s start with a simple idea which is a lounging space. If your balcony has a lovely view, you can create a lounging space. So that you or your guests can just sit around and enjoy the view over coffee or just chat. There are many ways you can create a lounging space, depending on the style of your preference. You can opt to have rattan or wicker sofas placed in. This charming Singapore balcony idea employs the use of locally made pieces inspired by the tropics. You can use peacock inspired accent chairs or even chairs reminiscent of mid-century modern pieces like Saarinen’s egg and womb chairs. Another reason why some designers and homeowners prefer wicker and rattan furniture is due in part to the material being all weather proof, making maintenance quite easy.
If you also noticed, most balconies have roofing, therefore giving you an open space to work with. And most balconies are located in the main space of the room which can also house both living and dining and occasionally, the master bedroom and the kitchen. If your space for a living room proves to be quite small to entertain, you can opt to have a second living room. Go for L shape sofas or even complete sofa sets. You can even have some blinds installed to serve as makeshift walls or shield yourself from the heat and glare of the sun. You can even place furniture pieces like buffets and cabinets to store additional knick knacks and tools. Since you have a beautiful view, why not make a space so comfortable and relaxing that you would actually spend more time lounging and staring at the view.
2. AL FRESCO DINING
What makes restaurants interesting and worthwhile?
- Is it because of the food?
- Perhaps, is it because of the rave reviews? Maybe.
- Is it the location?
You’re getting warmer. What makes restaurants interesting is due in part to the spectacular view it could offer its patrons. It is safe to say that diners would pay much to have dinner with a view. But what if you could have that view albeit, using your own balcony? One of the most unique balcony ideas Singapore hdb homes are adopting is having the balcony serve as an alfresco or outdoor dining room. A lot of hdb homes have views that are too amazing not to ignore and more often than not, they create another dining area.
Depending on the style you prefer, you can have either a garden style dining set up or a more formal intimate set up. You can start with the standard 4 seater set or if the space allows it, you can go for a 6 seater. Try experimenting with different styles. IF you’re into tropical dining, you can opt for all weather furniture. If you’re more of an eclectic type, you can opt to have a dining set from carved wood or perhaps a mismatched dining set. To set the mood for your al fresco dining room, hang some pendant lamps and you can even place a mini bar if you would like to provide drinks and have fun conversations with your guests.
3. COFFEE WITH A VIEW
One thing that makes cafés interesting is the fact that many cafes employ tall windows for patrons to have a view of the cityscape as well as tall bar tables and chairs to sit on. The same can be said for balcony space. What better way to have your afternoon coffee than with a spectacular view straight from your balcony.
This interesting Singapore balcony idea takes a cue from the modern café and relies heavily on creating a special place just for you. Place a tall bar table against your balcony railings and accentuate it with a unique bar chair. If your space is quite small, you can opt to have your table suspended from the ceiling. If you want a more space saving option, you can have a table custom made to look like a framed artwork and pulled down to reveal a fixed table that can be used for just about anything from enjoying coffee to even writing or doing other relaxing activities while enjoying a personal view.
4. A LITTLE GARDEN OF YOUR OWN
Not all condos and hdbs are blessed to have garden plots. While there are some who are fortunate, many homeowners do what they can to bring in a little nature into their home. A very unique balcony idea Singaporeans often try is creating pocket gardens. A pocket garden, just by the word itself, is a small garden that is usually small in size and has plants that are easily maintained and do not require large plots of land to cultivate. While most pocket gardens are located indoors, several of them can be seen in the balconies.
One of the most important things to consider when executing your balcony garden idea Singaporean style is understanding the kind of plants that you can use in your garden. And more importantly, if your property permits it. You will want to consult with the property manager on whether having a garden is permitted. If it is, then you have nothing to worry about. There are some types of plants that are permitted in several properties, but you would want to have plants that are, as mentioned earlier, easy to maintain and requires less garden soil.
Some of the most popular plants making their way to hdb homes include spider plants, yellow palms, money plants, aloe versa, air plants and of course, monstera plants. You can check for inspiration on sites like Google and Pinterest, but you can also consult with professional landscapers and gardeners who can give you advice on what you should place in your garden. A really cool idea to try out is having a wall covered completely in self-sustaining vines, giving the impression of a bush covered wall. You can even place a garden bench against it. Invest in plant stands and planters that are not bulky and can easily fit your balcony. Some of the most popular planters and plant stands are made out of rattan, bamboo, steel and of course, wood.
5. PRIVATE WORKING SPACE
Not all condos are big enough to have a private working space. While some opt to adopt a more minimalistic approach to working, be it on the laptop or desk work, you cannot deny that whatever task you encounter, you need an ample amount of workspace. And what better way to use the balcony for this. You can create a small working space by placing a worktable either against the railing or against the wall, the latter giving you the option to install some stylish shelves for storage.
With this idea, you can work and have a gorgeous and all natural source of air and light, making for efficient productivity at the comfort of your own home. An interesting condo balcony idea Singaporean designer’s use is installing a wall mounted table that can fold down into a daybed when you’re done with the table. These really unique Murphy bed like pieces combine the aspects of a personal lounging space and a working space. The most important thing you must consider is how creative you want it to look as well as how comfortable it will be.
When it comes to balcony ideas, Singapore homes and condos don’t require much construction and deliberation. It all falls down to how unique you are and how creative and efficient you want your balcony space to be. After all, you have a breathtaking view and room for you to enjoy. Take advantage of it without and create that space that will truly make your home one of a kind!