A Clear Vision for a Start-Up Condo Unit

Knowing what you want for your home is the first big step in designing a place for keeps

Original Article: Ciel Tagaza Photography: Ocs Alvarez/ACME Visual Productions Styling: Gwyn GS Guanzon

To turn a bare box of a condominium unit into a beautiful home, three elements are essential: meticulous planning, a clear vision of what you want, and a measuring tape. These helped homeowner Leys when he designed his 54sqm two-bedroom unit.

His start-off points were accessories he already had: mirrors with wenge-finish frames and a set of red-and-gold paintings. Looking at them, Leys figured out what theme he wanted to follow: contemporary chic with an Asian attitude.

For three months, he worked on finding the perfect furniture and accessories, leaving the unit’s original finishing largely untouched. If Leys couldn’t find the exact piece he wanted, he turns to having pieces custom-made according to his specifications. An interesting example: the detailing for his dining table was a latticework he found in a Chinese palace.

Original article by Ciel Tagaza. Styling by Gwyn GS Guanzon. Photographed by Ocs Alvarez/ACME Visual Productions.

Read the original article ("Make Room for Style") in the September 2007 issue of Real Living Magazine. To download a digital copy of Real Living Magazine, visit Summit Newsstand at

Living Area The paleness of the unit’s walls is nicely complemented by Leys’ dark furniture pieces.
Living Area Detail The paintings and mirrors on the living area walls are where the whole design concept began. Instead of a television set, an altar sits against the drapes.
Living Area Detail The light-colored walls and sofa work well with the dark furniture pieces and brown border of the mirrors.
Dining Area The dining area is given a double dose of size by a full-length mirror on the wall right beside the table.
Kitchen The overhead wooden cabinets with frosted glass panels give the kitchen a cool and organized vibe.
Staircase The high ceiling is emphasized by a chandelier hanging over the staircase leading to the loft.
Landing On the stair landing, Leys keeps his footwear in a shoe cabinet that doubles as a console.
Design Detail Right by the staircase stand big bamboo sticks in their heavy kamagong pedestal. The supersized bamboo is just the right touch to lead the eye up to the loft.
Bedroom Leys’ bedroom was designed especially for sleep, with its relaxing custom-made linen and drapes in green-mint and a low-maintenance indoor plant.
Bedroom Detail How can you not want to doze off once you set foot in this soothing bedroom? The colors perfectly complement each other as the palette is perfect for relaxation.
Extra Room Leys turned the second bedroom in the loft into a chill reading and music room. He prefers to read books and listen to music than watch TV.
Outdoor Dining Nook Since Leys doesn’t use the utility area, he turned it into an outdoor dining nook, with a high chair bought in Dapitan. For entertaining, Leys sets up a buffet table out there.

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