design

Très Chic

Lots of white and pastel hues with occasional pops of neon. I think these spaces designed by Ukraine-based Mooseberry Group are incredibly happy and pleasing to the eyes.

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Unusual Vending Machines

Gone are the days when we turn to vending machines to satisfy our Hello Panda or Nescafe cravings fix. Vending machines – they are not just for all things edible anymore. I was walking around the all-luxe Robinson’s mall (a $40-million flagship located where the old Heeren was) over the weekend and spotted something interesting amidst all the upscale male fashion brands.

Strategically placed near an oversized leather couch, this machine isn’t difficult to spot. It offers readers three issues (current and back-copies) of August Man – a local men’s luxury lifestyle publication. Priced at $7.90 per issue, I felt this tie-up between a luxury magazine and a mall is so appropriate. After all, this publication seeks to target the more affluent and style conscious individual which most likely fits the profile of a buyer at this Robinson’s outlet.

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This discovery inspired me to find out other unique vending ideas around the world. Here is a short compilation of the more unusual or innovative ones !

1. Egg Vending Machine in Japan 

2. “Sprinkles” Cupcake ATM in US

Honestly, I think I would prefer the traditional retail experience when buying a cupcake. The combination of getting a cupcake from an instant machine just hints tasteless and staleness to me.

3. Lobster Vending Machine in Las Vegas

4. Fresh Salads Vending Machine in Tokyo

5. Gun Vending Machine in South Africa

A New-Zealand based ad agency spearheaded this campaign promoting a gun-free society. The line under “insert coin below” reads” “Your donation will go to the Gun Control Alliance, for a gun-free South Africa”. In a way, it also demonstrates to the public how guns are so easily accessible within the country.

6. Bicycle Vending Machines in Europe

This one is my favourite. Say hello to Bikedispenser! These 24/7 operating stations are scattered around cities in Europe. Commuters can ride from one destination to another and drop the vehicle off at the next nearest dispenser. Singapore should consider implementing this idea at our MRT stations isn’t it? It promotes a greener commuting method and also saves you the hassle of locating a bicycle parking space.

 

 

Creative Spotlight: Aakash Nihalani

Love his work! New York-based street artist, Aakash Nihalani creates visually striking optical illusions using neon tape and people as his canvas. According to his biography, what makes his work so appealing is the intentional interplay between the shapes he uses and the unconventional means of portraying them. At first glance, we expect to see a simple geometric arrangement, but in reality, his work makes us stop and go…”Wait a moment….how did he do that!” Below are some of his mind-bending installations spotted on the streets.

(via Colossal)

(via Colossal)

(via Street Art Bio)

(via Fubiz)

(via Pinterest)

(via IGNANT)

(via Design Milk)

(via Design Milk)

Birthday Staycation: Lloyd’s Inn Singapore

Time really flies when you’re having fun. A few days before my birthday last year, I remember getting duped by two close friends who tricked me into a one-night staycation at Hotel 1929! It was an awesome experience which I still fondly remember today. We started off meeting at a mall before we were supposed to head to our lunch location.

Then,  one of them suddenly mentioned she needed to hand over something to a client. Didn’t find anything suspicious while we were in the cab and even after we reached the hotel….till we three finally adjourned in a cosy hotel room! I remember lots of endless giggles and jumping on the fluffy white bed thereafter. This happened in 2013.DSC03903photo (10)

Like what one of them said, somehow the stars aligned again this year and another staycation opportunity sprung up! I was simply told to pack a set of overnight clothes and my passport. That evening, we enjoyed  2-hrs Mookata dinner and caught up as usual. I began to suspect something was wrong when they didn’t seemed in a rush to catch a ferry/coach. My instincts proved me right! The passport idea was just a fake! Our cab drove right up to an unsuspecting place at Lloyd Rd.

Our city escapade began right here at Lloyd’s Inn.

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(Photo of the old Lloyd’s Inn via here)

Designed by my previous company, FARMWORK, Lloyd’s Inn is a newly refurbished 34-room boutique hotel located in the heart of Somerset area. The photo above shows how the previous Lloyd’s Inn looked like, it was branded as a budget motel in every sense, with few facilities and barely any focus on the design aspects.

We arrived at Lloyd’s Inn at night. These photos were taken by my iPhone during the next day. Upon entering the hotel through a little gate, you’ll be greeted with the modernist style of the building. The decor is minimalist with lots of exposed concrete, accents of black and white and occasional pops of lush greenery.

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We arrived on the night of the soft launch so check-in was pretty smooth and fuss free. I felt the reception lobby really set the tone of the whole hotel – peaceful, calm and clean. While waiting for your rooms to be processed, you can also sit around and browse a selection of Cereal or Kinfolk copies.

This hotel does not boast an impressive array of fancy facilities. At least, it offers guests the comfort of an outdoor garden patio and a mini dipping pool. There’s also a few lounging chairs for you to soak up the holiday sunshine!

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While the lobby is the heart of the hotel, the guest rooms reveal its soul. There are a range of room types for you too choose from, depending on your travel needs and purpose of stay. From the Standard Rooms to the luxe Suite Rooms, the experience and design on the interior remains consistently, refreshingly raw. Our designated room for the night was “The Garden”.

On top of the basic comforts of the standard room, this room features an outdoor garden and a lounge chair. The room size is not too cramped like some other boutique hotels and amenities are adequate for the business traveller or couples. Each room also comes with a light Biscotti snack made from a tie-up with Freshly Baked bakery situated along Killiney Rd. A very thoughtful detail.

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The bathroom also reflects the contemporary nature of the hotel. It’s open concept design of the showering area makes one feel at one with nature. Of course, you can also choose to draw the showering curtains and make the most of your Grohe Rainshower experience. By the time we settled down, it was already 1 or 2am. Unfortunately, our next-door neighbors were making such a din in the room and we barely had a good night’s sleep. I’m wondering if the walls are even soundproof at all…the sound of their of their laughter felt so close to our bed, it was difficult to ignore.

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Guests can also enjoy the complimentary beverages at the hotel’s outdoor pantry. The owners believe that breakfast should be enjoyed at one’s own pace. These are the neighboring homes just across the hotel.

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Later in the morning, we took a quick tour around the hotel and popped by some other type of rooms. I stood in this room quite literally in awe. If i’m not wrong, this room is the “The Reading Room” which will set you back only at approx S$158/night!

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That’s it for our one-night staycation at Lloyd’s Inn! We left this place knowing we’ll definitely be back very soon 🙂 Hope you found this short review useful for your next staycation plan. For bookings and enquiries, please visit:

Lloyd’s Inn Singapore
2 Lloyd Road Singapore S239091
Tel: +65 6737 7309

Creative Spotlight: Chew Hon Lam

Getting tickled over his work at 12 midnight. Based in Malaysia, Chew is an illustrator who designs and sells t-shirts at flyingmouse365.com. Hope you’ll enjoy seeing his work too!

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