Behind the Red Door / by camiel weijenberg

Nestled within Keong Saik Street in the hearth of Singapore, a solitary Red Door makes a playful reference to the area’s red light district past where secret societies of the day ruled. Today, behind this door sits a hotbed of design and architectural talent with ambitious visions for the future.

WEIJENBERG, a boutique firm founded by Camiel Weijenberg, Dutch architect and scholar of the Architecture Association, opened its doors in 2013. To the taste of international Michelin starred chefs, Weijenberg has worked with the likes of Nuno Mendes of Viajante fame in London and collaborated with Jason Atherton to create his atmospheric bar ‘The Library’ abridged to the hip chic Keong Saik Study in Singapore. Most recently the firm joined forces with Chef Andre Chiang of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants to launch his latest venture, RAW, in the trendy area of Le Qun 3rd Road in Taipei.

Described by Wallpaper Magazine as having, “A reputation for design pieces of architectural ambition,” WEIJENBERG’s repertoire is extensive, boasting not only private design projects, but large-scale commercial ventures. Past works include the Ling Tin Tsuen Clubhouse Hong Kong, a luxury living space for the city’s elite in collaboration with Argentine architect, Ernesto Bedmar from Bedmar and Shi. Currently WEIJENBERG is working on a private residence within the prestigious setting of Penang Hill and a boutique resort in a secluded peninsula in Sri Lanka.

The success of WEIJENBERG lies within its ethos of ‘Crafting the Traditional’- a modern yet classic outlook on design that is functional, complementing the elements surrounding the environment. The firm achieves its signature aesthetic largely down to WEIJENBERG’s subsidiary business of crafted bespoke furniture pieces, which D&A magazine describes as, “Fuelled by passionate exploration to push the structural boundaries of material.” Camiel's foundation in carpentry and interior design have trained his sense of interaction between space, structure and matter, and it is these custom-designed, custom-made interiors that are WEIJENBERG’s calling card, with many standalone pieces featured in private homes. 

Camiel says, “What inspires and excites me is the constant evolution of design when a client comes to WEIJENBERG with a blank sheet of paper and a seed of an idea. At any point we can be working on projects as varied as a private home on the peak in Penang, a 25 villa boutique hotel in Sri Lanka or a custom-made piece of furniture as a gift for a client’s wife. It is our role to collaborate with clients, to translate vision into reality and to challenge what is possible to create something truly unique.”

In 2015, WEIJENBERG is inviting clients to go behind the Red Door at 43B Keong Saik Road.