“I think you do a better job than the photoshoot by the lifestyle magazine.” said Mom. This was a few years ago. I haven’t been home since Christmas until recently & with this blog, it prompted me to look back at the collection of photos of various moments in the past 10 years.
This is one man’s dream. He who dared to dream, draw & build. Then, he named his castle Gein Villa, after the love of his life, our Mom. We, their children, have been constantly reminded that this is THEIR dream (NOT ours) and we are just lucky to be living in THEIR dream. What’s more amazing is it is a living dream. It never stops growing, evolving & developing. Like all things, the change in “fengshui” as mom likes to call it & nature is constant, which makes it a whole lot more fun & exciting. It is a home designed & built with love not just for the family but shared & cherished by many – our guests, pets, trees & wild animals.
Perched on the hillside of a laidback tropical island in Malaysia, 15 mins walk to the beach, this 8,000 square feet dream home stacked over 3 floors has:-
– 5 bedrooms & 5 bathrooms
– an open plan kitchen,
– a study room,
– an infinity pool with sea view,
– indoor fishpond,
– an outdoor sea view jacuzzi tub among the tree top,
– a man cave (aka Dad’s workshop), &
– a party den with discolights & chandeliers, karaoke system, big screen TV, pool table & a bar.
There is no specific dining area because like the weather, it depends on the mood of the day – party, fancy pancy, BBQ or simply a dinner.
This house is the pioneer of solar powered homes in Malaysia. Then, the pioneer in aquaponics farming. Dad is man of unprecedented principles, a true believer in the power of passion & being “Better Together”. The once upon a time poor & “bad” boy of George Town, he grew from engineering phones & telecoms to building & running factories around to world to building & living his dream life at 55 from the seas to the summits.
Solar powered – Our rooftop solar panels generate about 50% of our household consumption & sells back to the national grid. The electricity bill for running this dream home is equivalent to the cost of running my apartment in Singapore.
Aquaponics Farm – We produce more vegetables & fruits (especially papayas & bananas) than we can possibly eat. So much that we sell the excess in front of our house to hikers & neighbours every morning who can “take now, pay later” if they didn’t bring any money. People are so happy with our produce that in return, we made so many new friends, received even more food & unique gifts … Only from the best & infamous food stalls on the island & unique things from around the world. It sparked so much joy, smiles & happiness through the simple conversations & gentle gestures from just simply being kind & generous.
Our helper, Nancy, says she is happier in our home than her own kampung because of the freedom to grow, empowerment to act & very much loved as part of the family.
Living with Nature
Like a true Buddhist, all beings are equal & part of the family. We strive to live in peace & harmony. We love them just as much as human beings. There is no prejudice, no discrimination regardless of what shape, size & colour you are or where you come from.
“Like my children, they can come & go at any time they want but they cannot live with me forever.” – Daddy Tan
Always Fun & Crazy
We celebrate every joyous occasion including Hari Raya, Diwali & everyone’s birthday. If you don’t know your birthday, our mom will create one for you like our helper & grandma. LOL… There’s always an excuse to party & celebrate life!
But it comes with a lot of responsibilities, too. If you can’t keep up, you can’t have them all. Mom & Dad does the farming, gardening, DIY repairs, shopping & oversees the entire household. Our helper & aunt does the housekeeping, feeding the animals & selling vegetables. I cook dinner for the family, scrub the windows & pool (instead of boats) when I’m home. The twins bake & serve breakfast or lunch on weekends. Everyone helps out at every party & the after party. It takes a great team to have a funtastic home & memorable parties!!!
Cost to build: Priceless with Love
Leadtime: A lifetime of hardwork & perseverance, approx. 20 years of dreaming, saving & drawing on flights & at airports + 3 years to build.
So what do you think? Inspired to build your dream home?
In case you’re still wondering if I run a lifestyle magazine, do advertising or run a marketing agency by profession… The answer is still no but I think I can if I wanted to & would happily do it with love. Just ask! ❤ 😊
PS: Then there is THIS on the other side of the world in Zurich. Very very similar in design, panoramic view & best sunset views, too. It overlooks lake Zurich instead of the sea. Its not ours but my parents’ best friends home who built their own, too. Coincidence? Or do you think you vibe your tribe and the worlds collide, where great minds think alike?