We got the keys to our apartment today! It’s a two-bedroom place on the 14th floor of a condo complex called The Hillier in the Hillview area. The draw of this area, which attracts many ex-pats, is that it has more green space nearby than nearly any other section of the island. We are a five-minute walk away from the MRT (the metro) and the nature preserve; we’re a three-minute walk from the bus stop. We have two grocery stores within a seven-minute walk; both are expensive by Singapore standards, but they’re handy, and one is on the second floor of our building.
Our furniture shipment will appear tomorrow (we’re at the hotel for one more night), so the apartment is pretty much empty at the moment. Pres took a few photos while it’s still stuff-free (though he notes that it’s really hard to take good pictures of a small apartment). This will be our bedroom:
The bed area is lofted — the ceilings are super-high — so we can use the area below for other things (not sure what yet). Those little stairs on the left lead up to the bed area (you can’t stand up there; we’ll have about three feet of clearance between the mattress and the ceiling, so I anticipate a few head-bumps before we’re through). There’s a closet under the stairs.
Here’s the view looking from the living room into the kitchen (it’s all one big room, really):
The front door is straight ahead; the master bedroom door is to the right, and the second bedroom door is to the left. Kitchen pluses: Great fridge, lots of light, tons of cabinet space, a built-in table, a combination oven/microwave (lots of apartments in Singapore don’t have ovens at all). There’s also a coffee maker built into the wall, but I’m not sure how much I’ll use it. Minuses: electric stove, very little counter space, no garbage disposal (they don’t do those here), no dishwasher (ditto).
This is the view looking across the fairly small second bedroom into the balcony. The balcony runs the full length of the second bedroom and the living room; it has huge louvered windows that you can open (here, they’re obviously closed).
The apartment also has two bathrooms, one off of each bedroom. Each has its own shower, and the one off of the second bedroom has a washer/dryer unit. The master bathroom has a rain shower and a Japanese-style soaking tub at the shower base, which I’m really happy about.
The last “room” in the apartment is a tiny third bedroom that the owner has turned into a giant closet with storage space. I think we could sleep a person in there if necessary, but we’re going to do our best to avoid that arrangement.
Here’s a panoramic view looking straight off of the balcony.
That’s our condo’s largest pool there in front, and and one of our two tennis courts. I should note that, from our apartment, we see a lot of that really tall building in the middle — it’s the other condo that’s part of our complex (that building is called New York; we live in London), and it feels much closer when you’re actually in the apartment. I’m going to have to get used to staring at the side of a building, but it’s hard to find an apartment in Singapore that doesn’t look out over other buildings. Besides, if I angle myself just right, I can get this view:
So I’m planning to sit just in one corner of the apartment so I have that view out over the greenery.
I also went to campus for my first look at the Counseling Office today. This is the front of the school:
And this is my little office:
It’s the only office in the Counseling center without windows, which makes me sad, but I’ll adapt. It’s attractive and a pretty good size (there are two more chairs to the right in the corner that didn’t make it into the picture) — I just need to add my toy basket, and I’ll be all set. Also, my office is right near the front entrance to the Counseling center, so I’ll see more people this way. Everyone I’ve met so far is really, really nice.
By the way, once we move tomorrow, we’ll be without wifi until Monday, so my blogging may suddenly slow down. And Monday is my first day of school, which means that I may become very busy, very fast. Sorry if I don’t post as much as I have been, I apologize; I’ll do my best.