We’re thrilled to welcome Daniel Du to our Singapore team as Senior Associate of Design. With a wealth of experience in Asia, Daniel is one of Singapore’s most highly regarded workplace designers.
We chatted to Daniel to hear about his career to date, how life in Singapore has influenced his craft, what inspires him, and why he chose to join us here at Unispace.
Tell us a bit about your background and professional experience.
I grew up in a village in Geylang, Singapore’s red-light district, so my childhood was filled with interesting characters from all walks of life. My parents were very relaxed with my upbringing, which has allowed my colourful personality to flourish. I don’t really conform to the usual social norms, and I’m not interested in being told that I can’t do something or that an idea is impossible.
I’ve taken this approach with me throughout my career, applying it to major retail, residential and corporate design and build projects. Most recently, I worked as an Interior Design Associate at Woods Bagot, where I was the primary client contact for all local projects. It was a great experience, and I got to spend a lot of time mentoring a team of young graduate designers, helping to show them how to read clients’ minds and transform their ideas and opinions into clear design resolutions.
What drew you to Unispace?
Unispace’s reputation has continued to grow in the region, so word of mouth led me to discover the company. The Singapore studio’s dynamic culture aligned with my working style and progressive vision. I’m very excited to be working towards the studio’s growth, sharing our knowledge and resources globally as we build our regional presence.
What are your priorities in your new role?
My goal is to ensure design excellence and best practice across all projects from concept through to delivery, as well as encouraging creative thinking within the design team, helping young designers to gain confidence and grow in their roles.
How would you describe the design scene in Singapore?
Singapore’s essence, to me, is a small country jam-packed with diversity. It has the ability to embrace and respect differences harmoniously in a highly crammed and pressurised environment. I like to use this narrative sometimes when storyboarding concepts or even in spatial planning.
While the design scene is still in its early stages, the government is making a concerted effort to push the initiative forward and I’m excited about the vibrant work that is sure to come out of Singapore in the years to come.
Where is your favourite place to hang out in Singapore?
The odd-numbered streets of Geylang are lined with delicious F&B offerings, many of them open well past midnight, so I love to head down to Geylang for supper. The area is full of buzz and character which makes it a great place to bring my friends who visit from overseas.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I have a curious mind, so I enjoy anything that engages or inspires me – whether that’s art and design, nature, culture, or just life in general. I love to pick up new skills and hobbies outside of work. Fun fact, I can sew, knit, do leathercraft, and I have a certificate in culinary arts too!
Before the pandemic, I loved to travel alone, roaming the world with no agenda or itinerary – allowing myself to get lost and be surprised. I usually find inspiration in new cultures and new people I encounter off the beaten track.
Our Singapore studio has gone from strength to strength in the past few years, and it’s great to have Daniel on board and working with both local and multinational clients as they consider their future real-estate and workplace strategies. To meet more of our global team, head to our Team page.