Dark Wood-and-White Combo Completes This Two-Storey Townhouse
Steering clear of popular trends, interior designer Catherine Cena-Yambao delivered a clean and contemporary home that meets the owners' requirements
This townhouse, built around the 70s or 80s, has a good structure but for the owners to truly maximize it, a total makeover was needed.
The owners had a few requests before the start of the renovation. They wanted something modern and clean but doesn’t fall under the Scandi or Japandi trend, and a bigger kitchen than the original layout had.
Taking these into consideration, interior designer Catherine Cena-Yambao worked on a dark wood-and-white theme, with modern elements and clean lines completing the look. The biggest change she had to oversee? Reconfiguring the layout of the townhouse to meet the owners’ needs while minimizing the amount of engineering work needed.
“The previous laundry area became the master bathroom, the previous master bathroom became the laundry room, one of the bedrooms was transformed into the living room, and the common bathroom on the ground floor was divided into two to create a powder room and a staff bathroom,” Cathy explains.
In just six months, the old townhouse became a modern dream home for a family of four.
Two-Storey Townhouse with Dark Wood-and-White Theme
According to Cathy, they had to transfer the main door of the townhouse and relocate the windows. Upon entrance, guests will be greeted by the compact foyer against the pantry under the stairs. It’s defined by a curved full-length mirror and wall-mounted shelves.
Ground Floor Overview
From the foyer, the dining and kitchen areas can be seen sharing an open layout. “The entire ground floor is done in neutrals. A gray tiled floor, white cabinets, quartz countertops, a faux concrete accent wall, and of course, a walnut shade of wood on the cabinets, and furniture,” explains the designer.
On the left from the main door is the inviting dining area furnished with a six-seater dining table from Commune PH and a built-in sideboard. There’s a TV as well so the owners can watch their favorite shows while savoring meals. The linear pendant light is from Home Cartel.
Cathy says that the owners wanted to have a coffee corner. “We had to make a special place for this and it’s one of my favorite features of the project,” she shares. Different coffee essentials are neatly kept in the coffee nook, some of which also double as décor.
The kitchen is spacious, complete with a breakfast bar that can accommodate three people comfortably. There’s also a space dedicated to the water dispenser while the built-in cabinets help conceal the panel board. “The island is lit up by spotlights on a track from IKEA,” adds Cathy.
The stairs used to be open but to maximize the space, Cathy decided to turn it into a storage space/pantry.
Compact yet chic best describes the 1.1m x 1.2m powder room. According to Cathy, they had to opt for a swing door to make the space inside bigger. Given the tight space, she had to source a tiny hand rinse basin from Kuysen, Duravit brand.
“We did the bottom half of the room in a dark tile with wood trim. Above the tile, we put a marble accent tile while the metal-framed mirror doubles as a shelf. A black wall lamp above the mirror completes the room,” Cathy shares.
Located on the second floor, the living area is spacious and ideal for entertaining guests. One of its main features is the half-glass wall and glass door that leads to the room from the staircase/altar. The designer took advantage of the high ceiling by dressing it up with wood accents. “We kept the old solid wood floors because they were still in very good condition,” she explains.
One of the owners’ requirements is having a daybed with a trundle in the living area. The piece completing the space is a commissioned piece by Oliohaus Custom Furniture. “This daybed is a real bed with a single-size mattress on top and in the pull-out. Most daybeds have smaller mattresses,” adds Cathy. Behind the sofa is the owners’ prized Acuña piece.
In front of the sofa are a big TV, more storage units, and gaming essentials on display.
From this angle, the countertop and ref requested by the owners can be seen. It’s used for baby supplies as the lady of the house had just given birth at the time of renovation. “We made sure she has a cabinet with a stone top, much like a kitchen counter in this space,” Cathy says.
Cathy placed a multi-way sofa from @imagi.ig by the window. It’s a set of upholstered foam blocks that can be configured in different ways.
A set of four Billy shelves can be seen against the wall to serve as a storage center. “The light blue paint color comes up to 2/3 of the walls, terminated by a small wood ledge on one side. The wood ledge allows for a more flexible décor style which is important for a kids’ room that evolves as the kids grow up,” explains Cathy.
A matching adult- and kid-sized Poang rocking chairs from IKEA are placed across the sofa. Cathy made sure the center of the room is kept clean and open, with a foam play mat taking up space where the kids can play.
A huge cabinet is added where clothes and other essentials can be kept. Meanwhile, a small study desk and chair take up space near the door.
A muted navy blue accent wall behind the king-size bed will capture one’s attention. The room isn’t big but Cathy had to fit a king-size bed as this was one of the owners’ non-negotiables.
A mirrored sliding barn door opens to the master bathroom.
According to the designer, the master bathroom used to be a laundry area with no roof. The hotel-like private space features a spacious shower area, countertop, and tons of storage options.
Cathy added cove lighting in the shower area to create drama in the space and make it more luxe.
The designer also added wall-mounted shelves above the toilet to accommodate handpicked décor pieces.
Cathy was able to do so much in the space to make sure the owners can accomplish chores efficiently. The palette is light and easy on the eyes – with white subway tiles and a light shade of wood for the cabinets.
To maximize the area, Cathy had to find a sink that perfectly fits in the space as well as incorporated a utility closet where cleaning supplies can be kept.
Interested to work with IDr. Catherine Cena-Yambao? You can email her at cathy[at]catherinecena.com. You can also follow her on Instagram: @catherinecenainteriors.
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