Singapore Institute of Architects

Singapore Institute of Architects Design Award for The Great Madras Hotel (2020)

The Great Madras is a good example of adaptive reuse of a conserved building. The Jury appreciates that the quality of the conserved building is not lost, but rather sensitively kept and that the new and old touches worked in tandem to preserve a cohesive experience that is reminiscent of its time. The project demonstrates the value-add of integrated design where interiors, signage, artwork and branding are conceived as a unified whole. In keeping with its intimate scale and through the emphasis of inherent architectural features through design, the architectural space and form is celebrated and synergized with a newly inserted hospitality programs. The architects have demonstrated skillful sensitivity to context, building and use for its inhabitants, as well as for architectural heritage.


Singapore Institute of Architects

Singapore Institute of Architects Design Award for Tzu Chi Humanistic Youth Centre

An awesome Re-Tzu Chi Humanistic Youth Centre services youth programs that advocate recycling, up-cycling and responsible living. The juror commended the designers for their ingenious revamp of what was formerly a single-storey polyclinic. The interior design encourages a behavioural shift upon entering and users are often quietened to a calmness in this space. The designers have demonstrated their ability to execute, with a single material and colour, a consistent and skillful interior that is at once engaging yet comfortable. Overall, the interior has successfully aligned with the global NGO’s branding and image to achieve a sense of place.

Urban Redevelopment Authority

Urban Redevelopment Authority Restoration Award for 28, 30, & 32 Madras Street

The success of the revival is anchored on understanding and leveraging on the inherent qualities of the building, as well as on capturing the spirit of the times through today’s lenses.

Much of the original structure was retained with natural ventilation and light reintroduced to the interiors. For the original 1940s facade, all external finishes were cleaned and repaired, such as the often overlooked fair-faced brickwork of the balconies and the Shanghai-plaster column bases.

To restore the many signature but corroded slender mild-steel framed windows, a specialist contractor was engaged to repair them on site. A pastel period paint scheme was also chosen for the facade, and collectively, this has kept the overall Art Deco look intact.

A true and gentle labour of love, the project has revealed the character and added charm to this property, revitalising the site to extend its longevity. The Great Madras is where both the traveller and the local can now encounter the culture and history of the historic Serangoon neighbourhood, and take away new memories for the future.

OHA Global: What We Do