Array
Condos

This Designer's Sophisticated 32sqm Condo Has A Story To Tell

A young designer takes a woodland fantasy and translates it into a magical home filled with organic touches

Shares
Original Article: Andrea Portugal Photography: Michael Angelo Chua Styling: Dagny Madamba

The ambiance of the 32sqm condo unit is moody but not dreary, solemn but still homey; just what you’d expect a man-cave to feel like. Almost immediately, you recognize the home as a space with a story to tell, and that’s exactly what draws you in.

“The first time I saw the space when it was still bare, I thought that it was really small, so I immediately had that cave theme in mind,” the designer recalls. Gino took to the drawing board and allowed the cave concept to weave itself into a design narrative. “I’ve always seen myself as kind of a hermit, so it was just a matter of finding a way to translate that cave theme and come up with a story.”

Picking a “story”

For his home, the narrative revolves around the experience of exploring the woods. He adds, “That’s my thing, I don’t go with design styles straightaway like, ‘Oh, I want it to be Georgian.’ Usually, I start with a story and the design kind of follows.” The result is a home that clearly represents Gino’s vivid imagination, refined aesthetic, and the distinct means by which he is able to marry the two.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

When asked if the living area is the “forest” that one traverses before going into the “cave,” Gino heartily replies, “Yes, that’s exactly it! I took inspiration from a trip to Tokyo last year, I wanted it to feel like how I felt when I was in the backstreets of Tokyo—super unpredictable in the sense that you have these temple structures right next to these modern structures.” Dark wood panels line opposite walls of the space and wrap existing beams, leaving the impression of being under a canopy of large trees. A tall bamboo plant sits in one corner of the room, adding an organic touch to the area.

Defining spaces transparently

The unit does not feel cramped, because instead of putting up a solid wall, Gino separated the sleeping and living areas with simple, black-framed, clear glass dividers. A peek into the bedroom reveals the full concept of his “cave” design. “I think you need time conceptualizing because it dictates everything,” Gino explains. “You need to establish a strong foundation, a strong point of view. For this, it was just cave—so when you hear that, you already know it’s going to be dark, it’s going to be moody, and it’s going to be textured.”

Gino points to the polymer clay “fungi” and the dramatic streaks on his bedroom wall. “I created these brown streaks with acrylic paint and a palette knife. I wanted it to feel the way you’d feel inside a cave, with lichen growing around you. That’s the story.” And what a grand story this tiny space is. 

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

More on Realliving.com.ph

Shares

Latest Stories

This Japanese Ritual Will Change How You Clean the Home

Start with a clean slate literally and figuratively

These Fun Walking Tours Will Take You Back to 1920s Manila

Better sign up ASAP!

A Modern Tropical Family Home in Quezon City

To renovate the house, interior designer Jasmine Ancheta worked with murals, captivating lighting pieces, and refreshing wallpaper

What You Need to Know About The Malabrigo Lighthouse, The Philippines' Oldest Working Lighthouse

Located in Lobo, Batangas, it serves as a guide for ships going to Batangas Bay or Sibuyan Sea through the Verde Island Passage

Start The Year Right With These Decluttering Tips

Achieve a cleaner and brighter home with these handy hints

Sagada's Newest Art Hub Is a Sanctuary in the Mountains

It is called the Dogo Siwang Art Hub

You'll Feel Right at Home in This Hotel in Pasig City

We're definitely going back!

Welcome Prosperity and Positive Vibes Into Your Home with Feng Shui

Improve the positive energy in your home with these friendly reminders

Kids Can Enter Ayala Museum For Free This Weekend

Don't miss out on this!

Turn Your Bedroom Into A Comforting Space with These Colors

Sweet, calming, and neutral colors are our top picks!

Your Ultimate Guide on Choosing The Right Kitchen Tools

Shopping for appliances is really about making the right decisions

7 Beautiful & Peaceful Staycation Spots in Tagaytay

From cozy B&Bs to luxurious hotels, we give you a roundup of some of the best places to stay in for your next trip to this vibrant city
Load More Stories

Get inspiring design ideas and handy hints.
Subscribe to our newsletter now!