On 16 June 2023, City Square Mall hosted Designing Our Eco-Future – an inter-school competition event comprising City Square Mall’s Home Balcony Landscape Competition, as well as CDL’s City Eco Bag Design Competition Prize Presentation. This event was part of CDL’s ongoing efforts to inspire sustainable living practices among Singaporeans and foster an environmentally conscious society, while actively involving the community and providing support to tertiary students in their artistic endeavours.
In the bustling heart of Singapore, where city lights gleam and the pace of life is relentless, finding a place of comfort and serenity becomes paramount.
Recognising the importance of mental well-being and sustainable living practices, the talented minds of Team Summer Sanctuary from ITE College East (Team Members: Mohamad Aqil Bin Mohamad Pesal (Team Leader), Nur Farhana Binte Adbul Razak, Nur Mohammad B Adbullah, Nur Izzati Sofiya Binte Mohamad Riduan, Sofia Naimah Binte Mohammad Khozaimi) crafted a visionary balcony design that promises to be a delightful retreat for the soul.
Finding peace and serenity with a hint of green
At the heart of their concept lies the understanding that greenery plays a pivotal role in fostering mental well-being. Nature has a unique ability to soothe the mind and body, reducing stress and bringing a sense of calm. Research has even shown that green spaces can aid in the recovery of patients in hospitals. However, in urban environments like Singapore, the availability of green spaces is often limited, making the incorporation of greenery within homes all the more crucial.
In this context, the idea of transforming a balcony into a sanctuary of vibrant colors and flavors of summer emerged. Team Summer Sanctuary sought inspiration from a beautiful experience that they cherished dearly. While summer may seem like an ordinary season in Singapore, it holds a special allure in other parts of the world, where flowers bloom, and nature bursts with a riot of colors. Drawing from this essence, the team envisioned bringing the vibrancy of summer to the little space a balcony offers, turning it into a personalized haven to appreciate the vivid hues, textures, and flavors of the season.The design process for Summer Sanctuary was a labor of love that involved creativity, collaboration, and resourcefulness.
With the tropical climate as their canvas, the team identified bold and lively colors, such as red, pink, orange, yellow, and purple, as the palette to represent the flavors of summer. These colors were used strategically in the selection of plants, flowers, and decorative elements to invoke the spirit of summer throughout the year.Incorporating fruits that are synonymous with the season, such as watermelon, pineapple, and guava, the team ingeniously added not just a visual but also a sensory element to the sanctuary. The cooling properties of these fruits serve as a reminder of summer’s refreshing embrace, and a delightful aroma diffuser with the scent of mandarin oranges further enhances the sensory experience. However, bringing this vision to life was not without its challenges.
Making it work
The team had to work within a tight budget, which required them to exercise resourcefulness and creativity. Salvaging materials and seeking support from the community were essential in overcoming financial limitations. In a heartwarming twist, a kind gentleman generously donated a water feature upon hearing about their situation, providing the perfect centerpiece for their sanctuary. This act of kindness not only made their design more feasible but also left an indelible mark on the team’s hearts.
The experience of working together as a team for the first time was a profound takeaway for Team Summer Sanctuary. They discovered the power of unity, understanding that they were only as strong as they were united. Tapping into each other’s strengths and supporting one another through their weaknesses, they transformed challenges into opportunities for growth and learning. This camaraderie and cooperation fueled their passion to succeed, and they embraced the idea of “paying it forward,” hoping to be a solution for someone else’s problems in the future.
Designing Our Eco-Future, hosted by City Square Mall, and CDL’s City Eco Bag Design Competition Prize Presentation served as a platform for these young talents to showcase their ingenuity, creativity, and commitment to sustainability. It’s through such initiatives that CDL continues to inspire sustainable living practices among Singaporeans and encourages an environmentally conscious society.
In the end, Summer Sanctuary stands not just as a beautiful balcony design but as a testament to the power of collaboration, the impact of green spaces on mental well-being, and the resilience of youthful spirits determined to make a difference. So, the next time you step onto your balcony, take a moment to savor the flavors of summer and embrace the vibrant colors that bloom all year round. For in the smallest of spaces, lies the potential for a sanctuary that can uplift the soul and brighten even the busiest of days.