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Building & Renovating

Our Top 10 Tropical Homes From 2017 Will Give You Vacation Feels

From a sprawling beach house to a tiny condo unit, these tropical interiors all have a relaxing, casual vibe

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Photography: Jilson Tiu & Michael Angelo Chua (Main Photos)

Tropical homes are like a breath of fresh air, literally. Open-plan layouts, cross-ventilation, natural-themed furnishings, and refreshing color palettes are all relaxing to the eyes and soul, not to mention, very appropriate for our country. Here are the tropical homes Real Living readers loved in 2017; check them out for for a quick escape.

10. A Two-Bedroom Tropical-Inspired Rest House in Tagaytay


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Tagaytay rest houses are usually ranch- or cabin-style homes befitting of the cool climate in the area. But decorator Grace Moslares decided to go the other way by giving this weekend condo unit a Filipino-tropical theme with woven furniture, capiz accents, and living areas that open easily to one another.

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Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

9. A Compact Modern-Tropical Condo Unit


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This 60sqm, one-bedroom unit by interior designer Pam Tan gets a nostalgic vibe by way of its wood-paneled walls and retro-midcentury silhouettes of some of the accent pieces. Other details that we love: the woven furniture from A. Garcia Crafts, the affordable accessories, and the incredibly soothing, light-colored palette.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

8. This Two-Storey Home Showcases a Mix of Traditional and Filipino Pieces


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The homeowner-couple had been living abroad for many years, and their various travel mementoes from foreign lands and an impressive collection of Filipino art all come together in bright and airy interiors designed by Nina Santamaria.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

7. A 1200sqm Modern Weekend Home in Batangas


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“The house is still a work in progress,” admits decorator and former RL creative director Gwyn Guanzon of the sprawling Batangas vacation home. He says that no matter how many furnishings he puts in, “hindi siya napupuno!” The highlights of the home include the massive but beautifully designed furnishings from Asian Tropical Lifestyle, the sleek island kitchen, and the dining area facing the pool.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

6. A Relaxing Tropical Home with Asian Touches


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Architect Mark Siapno did the near impossible: make a dark 1980s home into a bright and modern family house for his family. Renovations included updating the exterior, opening up rooms, and adding more windows to let in air and light.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

5. A Modern Filipino Style for a Three-Bedroom Condo


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Interior designer Pam Tan does it again with another tropical-style condo, but this time with distinctly Filipino touches. She did this by furnishing it with pieces by noted Pinoy designers like Vito Selma and Kenneth Cobonpue, and using surface finishes in pale wood and capiz.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

4. A Designer Uses the Color of the Year in a Condo


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Most designers would choose muted color palettes for small condo homes, but not Kristine Neri. She used the bold, bright Greenery, Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2017, as the primary accent of this 131sqm condo. The interior designer also infused a tropical theme in a subtle way by using palm-printed wallpaper, natural materials in the finishes and accessories, and live plants.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

3. An Airy, Modern-Pinoy Family Home in Quezon City


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This multilevel home is the epitome of tropical style: wide, open and airy spaces, natural materials, Filipino fabrics, woven furniture, a lush backyard, and a treehouse to boot! We also can’t help but drool over the lovely Siematic kitchen, which isn’t a surprise as Cara was the senior principal designer for Focus Global, and her husband Edwin works in the food business.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

2. An Old-Fashioned Bahay Kubo in Palawan


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A real bahay kubo such as this one—which is the family home of the Banzuelas—is as authentically tropical-Pinoy as it can get. But you might be surprised to find out that the kubo has myriad details, such as bulwagan (main hall) in the center, an intricate thatched roof, and a freeform stair railing made out of a naturally curved bamboo pole.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

1. A Calming Tropical-Inspired Dream Home for a Young Couple


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What happens when Scandinavian meets tropical design? You get a 140sqm condo that is sleek, clean-lined, and visually refreshing—it is no wonder it got the most views of the year!


We love how interior designer Edna Chua used restrained tropical touches, such as the many potted greens, and the floral-print upholstery that is used as a very subtle accent in the dining chairs and pillows.

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Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour. 

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