Updated: 05/08/2012 00:00

Free concept condo trial showcases small space

A brand new space-saving condominium is being offered to one lucky family—for free—to show that size...

A brand new space-saving condominium is being offered to one lucky family—for free—to show that size doesn’t matter when it comes to home furnishing in Singapore.

Expat Guides
(One developer is offering the chance to live in a condominium for free in exchange for honest feedback.Image courtesy of Thinkstock.)

No, this isn’t the giveaway of the century. Instead, it’s a trial organised by the developers of the Fiorenza condominium in Kovan, in an effort to show that small living spaces can be well utilised.

Koh Brothers—the firm behind the 28-unit development—has kitted out the two-bedroom unit with special furniture to maximize the square footage and show off its potential. And now they need a willing family to test it out for six months.

Launched last year, units at Fiorenza have been sold at an average of $1,000-1,100 per sq ft. Only two units remain.

A test for small spaces

Koh Brothers hope to use the exercise to gather useful feedback on 'lifestyle living', as opposed to just selling an unfurnished unit.

The flat measures 1,367 sq ft—of which nearly 500 sq ft make up the rooftop garden, leaving about 872 sq ft of indoor living space. It is fully furnished, with everything from a washing machine to cutlery, and has been cleverly arranged to look and feel much larger.

The successful family will be a family of three, including a child. To apply, they must submit a 100-word essay on why they deserve the experience.

Throughout the stay, utility bills will be paid for but the family will have to cover costs such as cleaning.

Concept home

Among the features that make the fifth-floor Fiorenza unit unique are a dining table that converts into a coffee table, a foldable bed, which can double as a study table, motorised sun shades and multi-room surround sound.

The 'concept home' with all its furnishings will cost $1.6 million to buy, while the unit alone costs $1.4 million. The winning family will not be obliged to purchase the unit after their six-month stay.

Mr Francis Koh, managing director and group chief executive of Koh Brothers, said to The Straits Times, “It's a passion for us, to improve the living conditions for the dweller so that they can experience what is ambience, nice avant-garde furniture, at the same time optimise the space.”

This is not the first concept condo from Koh Brothers; luxury units at The Lumos, on Leonie Hill, were recently kitted out with designer furnishings in collaboration with high-end names Fendi and Kenzo.

The Fendi unit alone costs almost $500,000 to furbish, and both units will be available in July.

Growing trend for small units

Group managing director of property consultancy Knight Frank, Danny Yeo, said this latest project from Koh Brothers is likely to be a testing platform for the future, in line with Singapore’s growing trend for smaller apartments.

He told The Straits Times, “Not everyone enjoys going to fit out the house […] some people like it in move-in condition, particularly for smaller units. If it works, why not?”

Additionally, by allowing people to live in the home, the developer is creative invaluable “connectivity with consumers”, he said.

Families interested in trying out the Fiorenza apartment can download the application form from the firm’s website and submit the essay between 2pm and 6pm on May 19, at Koh Brothers Building, 11 Lorong Pendek, Singapore 348639.

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