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SETTLING IN: Thomas Doctor and his family chose to call this pre-war shophouse home (above) within three weeks of arriving in Singapore.

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VINTAGE STYLE: The home is actually two shophouses combined to make a larger home of six self-contained units.

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SETTLING IN: Thomas Doctor and his family (above) chose to call this pre-war shophouse home within three weeks of arriving in Singapore.

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SETTLING IN: Thomas Doctor and his family chose to call this pre-war shophouse home (above) within three weeks of arriving in Singapore.

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SETTLING IN: There are two communal kitchen/dining areas in this shophouse rises to the roof.

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SETTLING IN: There are two communal kitchen/dining areas in this shophouse rises to the roof.

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OPEN CONCEPT: The common staircase with its multi-purpose steel cage storage-cum-handrail that rises to the roof.

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DYNAMIC DUO: The idea to combine two shophouses to make it into a larger home came from Ong Chin Hwee. His younger brother, Ong Xi Bin, has moved into a unit (above) with his wife.

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DYNAMIC DUO: The idea to combine two shophouses to make it into a larger home came from Ong Chin Hwee (left). His younger brother, Ong Xi Bin, has moved into a unit (above) with his wife. The younger Mr Ong, who calls himself a 'semi-professional struggling artist', has a spray painted portrait of a cat on his balcony wall.

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DYNAMIC DUO: The younger Mr Ong, who calls himself a 'semi-professional struggling artist', has a spray painted portrait of a cat on his balcony wall.

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OPEN CONCEPT: 'We usually keep our doors open,' says Manola Pegoraro (above) who lives in a double storey one-bedroom unit.

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OPEN CONCEPT: 'We usually keep our doors open,' says Manola Pegoraro who lives in a double storey one-bedroom unit (above).

Old charm, new era

Most Singaporeans are HDB dwellers, but the pre-war shophouse in the old neighbourhood of Katong/Joo Chiat offers an alternative type of living.
Jul 18, 2015 5:50 AM

THE chance to live in a pre-war shophouse set in the old neighbourhood of Katong/Joo Chiat proved too "irresistible" for Thomas Doctor of Denmark, so within just three weeks of arriving in Singapore, he signed on the dotted line of the lease for a home on Crane Road, just off Haig Road. "This

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