Vale House: Designed for Tropical Family Living in Singapore

This contemporary family home in Singapore, designed by Ming Architects in 2023, offers a seamless integration of indoor and outdoor living. The Vale House features a practical four-bedroom layout with a close connection to nature, addressing the challenges of its front-facing, busy street location through a deliberate design strategy. By creating an internal courtyard, the architects have turned the views inward, amplifying the tropical living experience and introducing natural light, ventilation, and lush greenery throughout the three-story residence.

Striking modern architecture with wooden accents, greenery, and a raised rooftop structure.
Lush tropical foliage frames a modern, open-concept living space with sleek furnishings.
Sleek, modern kitchen with natural wood ceiling, concrete floors, and floor-to-ceiling windows.
Serene indoor-outdoor space with glass walls, lush greenery, and minimalist decor.
A modern foyer with wooden ceiling, concrete stairs, and minimalist decor accents.
Striking staircase design with contrasting black metal and wood, surrounded by lush greenery.
Spacious bedroom with warm wooden walls, large windows, and modern furnishings.
Sleek modern architecture with lush greenery, outdoor seating area, and city skyline.
Contemporary tropical residence with bold angular facade, wooden accents, and lush landscaping.

About Vale House

In 2023, Ming Architects designed a contemporary family home in Singapore, aptly named Vale House. Crafted for a young couple with children, this practical and nature-inspired abode offers a close connection to the outdoors.

Designed for Privacy and Serenity

Situated on a busy street with high vehicular traffic and a public bus route, privacy was a paramount concern. The architects cleverly closed off the ground-floor living spaces facing the street with a solid-clad wall, creating an internal courtyard that became the focal point of the home.

Immersed in Tropical Greenery

The key architectural response was to orient the home around the private courtyard garden, which spans three floors vertically. This design decision amplifies the feeling of living in the tropics, with the lush landscape cascading down the planters from the top to the ground floor, akin to a forested green wall.

Seamless Indoor-Outdoor Living

At the ground floor, the occupants experience the effect of being in a natural, lush green valley enveloped by nature, with hanging creepers flowing down from high above. The courtyard also introduces natural lighting, ventilation, and views of nature deep into the house on all levels, while providing a sense of security and privacy.

Maximizing Spaciousness

The living, dining, and dry kitchen areas are designed as a single open space, fully maximized to gain a sense of spaciousness. This open-plan layout faces the courtyard, shielding it from the main street and western sun on the front facade.

Bringing Nature into the Home

The staircase, located next to the courtyard, immerses the occupants in nature while traveling through the floors. The design of the stairs features an open, airy concept with black painted steel and open timber treads for maximum light penetration.

Seamless Integration of Natural Materials

On the building facade, large pivot screens of solid teak wood are used to deflect afternoon heat and create privacy for the bedrooms facing the main street. Teak wood was selected for its warmth and hard-wearing qualities, both on the external facade and within the building.

Photography courtesy of Ming Architects
Visit Ming Architects

- by Matt Watts