Indian entrepreneur Shobhan Mittal of Greenply Industries shares his love for well-designed furniture, vibrant colours and cutting-edge technology, and how everything came together to shape his new home in Sentosa.
Shobhan Mittal (SM): I was born in a small town in the North East of India, called Tinsukhia. It is an idyllic place with tea gardens from the colonial times. Due to a lack of proper schooling options, my parents sent my elder brother and I to a boarding school when we were quite young so we became quite independent. As a child, I saw my father working very hard. He was always passionate about his work. We spent several school holidays at the industrial units where he was setting up [the business]. It was this upbringing that has shaped my work ethic and career so far. I enjoy every aspect of my work.
Why did you choose to live in Sentosa?
SM: My wife and I find Sentosa very relaxing. Even when we used to live in India, we lived on the outskirts of the city, on a larger land with more open space. These are commonly known as ‘farmhouses’ in Delhi. It never bothered us that Sentosa, by Singaporean standards, is considered far from town. We enjoy the quietude and resort-like atmosphere here.
What do you love about art, furniture and design?
SM: I appreciate the technical aspects of design a lot. Whether it is art, furniture or objects, the first thing I look at in a design is the extraordinary use of technology. I also love the elegance and aesthetics of certain pieces that I have. And for some, particularly with art, it is just about how it makes you feel.
Your apartment feels vibrant and full of life.
SM: I have always enjoyed colour across all thing in my life, whether it is clothes, objects or furniture. I think colour represents the fullness of life and makes one feel joyous.
SM: A large part of the family life is spent in the dining room and the dry kitchen. The lights that are suspended above the dining table and the kitchen counter give warmth to the space and infuse a sense of fluidity and fun.
We love the Moroso sofa that we have in the family room. It is extremely comfortable and cozy to lounge on and watch television. It looks fabulous as well. We have had many parties in that space and the sofa lends itself to all kinds of gatherings.
One of the most used spaces is our son’s playroom. We wanted him to have a room where there is ample space to move around so we left one bedroom completely empty for this purpose. It is littered with toys, cars, rocking horses and ball pools. We did put in a shelving unit, which is a lovely feature. It gives some structure to the otherwise unstructured space, yet it is playful and organic – perfectly suited to the atmosphere of a playroom.
Is there a particular spot where you personally enjoy?
SM: My balcony. The only place where my wife allows me to smoke!
What does a ‘home’ mean to you?
SM: Home to me is a place of comfort. It is where you feel most relaxed.