If Jeffrey Xu had gotten a place of his own just a few years ago, it would’ve looked very different from the Bendemeer condo, which he bought for S$800K back in July, that he now calls home.
The Shanghai-born actor (and now Singapore PR), 33, officially moved into the two-room resale unit on September 9 and 8days.sg recently dropped by for a house tour.
Now, we admit we were expecting to walk into a unit that’s full of really bold, bright colours and furnishings (mostly ‘cos of Jeffrey’s penchant for quirky streetwear), but instead, we were greeted by a much more zen, Muji-esque palette of neutrals and muted tones, not unlike Derrick Hoh’s love nest.
Jeffrey confirms that the aesthetics are a 180-degree turn from what he would have gone for in, say, 2016, where he might have engaged someone like street artist Jahan Loh to come and paint something really over-the-top.
All photos cannot be reproduced without permission from 8days.sg.Here’s what the place looked like before a simple renovation, which took less than two months.Jeffrey spent about S$2,000 on several of these racksHowever, there are still touches of Jeffrey’s inner hypebeast in the form of industrial-style furniture, trendy collectible art toys, and various paraphernalia that he’s accumulated over the past decade that he “can’t bring [himself] to throw away”.
The first thing that caught our eye when we stepped into the cosy 80 sqm space was a pair of metal racks, which were imported from Italy, displaying a variety of mostly decorative items such as his collection of Slam Dunk comics (his favourite manga series), a giant S$700(!) candle (a very generous housewarming gift), and a Mona Lisa-printed Bearbrick (he has several other models scattered around the house).
A bit less conspicuous is a group of tiny Smurf figurines, one of which is holding a sign that says “Sorry” — a ‘memento’ from a lovers’ tiff he had with girlfriend Felicia Chin, 37.
In fact, the whole apartment is filled with little Feli-related keepsakes.
Tacked to a board in the kitchen alongside other small pieces of memorabilia is a S$2 note that actually has a story behind it: “I had a quarrel with Felicia and got so angry that I threw the note on the ground. I later went to pick it up and kept it as a reminder that I shouldn’t be like that ‘cos I used to have a very bad temper.”
He’s got things that remind him of good memories too, like a seemingly insignificant pair of cheap flip-flops.
“We were out and I was wearing a new pair of shoes that were very uncomfortable and kept hurting my feet, so Felicia went to buy that pair of slippers for me,” he smiled. “I treasure them more than any of my sneakers.”
Feli also gifted Jeffrey with bar stools, designer bedsheets, plushies, and other cutesy knick-knacks. Basically, the rule of thumb is that if something can be considered “cute” or “girly”, it was most probably a present from her.
She even got him a bouquet of pink roses to help spruce up the place when she found out that we were going to visit him for the house tour. So sweet, right?
Over in the living room is a sofa with a pull-out bed that Jeffrey sleeps on when his mother stays over so she can have the master bedroom instead.
In fact, Mama Xu actually happened to be in town the day we stopped by but went out to jalan jalan by herself so Jeffrey wouldn’t break the two-pax visitor rule.
One imagines Jeffrey is much more conscientious about observing social distancing rules given the very public lesson he learnt last year.
There’s also another one of the Italy-imported racks, but in a smaller size, displaying a) a pair of self-lacing sneakers on a charging pad — it’s strictly for decoration only and has never been worn — and b) a KAWS Companion figure that’s lying face down, which Jeffrey explained is a way to sum up the world’s feelings about the year 2020 (you know, ‘cos COVID and all).