. You've heard the name of this private members' club
floating around the creative circles, together with the cries of submission from one too many guilty gourmands about the otah and comté sandwich by its public eatery, Clan Café
. You already know the social trappings such a club promises to offer, but what exactly makes up the spaces that incubate this community of change-makers?
The first step: Look for designers who get what the hospitality group Lo & Behold (main man Wee Teng Wen
is a co-founder of Straits Clan, together with The Ate Group's Aun Koh) is setting out to do. Enter design company Takenouchi Webb, who were responsible for trendy and see-and-be-seen establishments such as Lo & Behold's Tanjong Beach Club
, Loof and The White Rabbit, as well as co-working space The Working Capitol and rooftop bar Potato Head Folk. A partnership between British architect Marc Webb and Japanese interior designer Naoko Takenouchi, the 12-year-old design duo knows what makes movers and shakers tick, bringing together a mood board of what resonates with the aforementioned audience: Stylish trendsetters with good taste, who in turn bring in their mates who aspire to such a psychographic. While interior design 101 directs designers to create a space that fuses form and function, Takenouchi Webb's flair for evoking a strong emotional response is what makes a lifestyle establishment really stand out.
The Singapore-based designers do this by leveraging on a site's historical connections. Heritage sites are something the duo continuously find themselves working with: The Black Swan on Cecil Street is housed in an iconic 1920's building, while Whitegrass
is situated on the site of the neoclassical Caldwell House. In a similar vein, Straits Clan resides in a four-storey Art Deco pre-war shophouse that dates back to 1928. Situated along Bukit Pasoh Road, its address is an interesting one — not only is the private members' club situated in an area where three historic enclaves meet (Tanjong Pagar, Chinatown and Outram Park), it also shares a street with The Ee Hoe Hean Club, a millionaires' club founded in 1895 by Gan Eng Seng and Lee Cheng Yan, two prominent Chinese merchants.