A Harmonious Two-Storey Home for Two Families

Common living areas, private spaces, and a crisp neutral palette make for an inviting family home

Original Article: Rachelle F. Medina Photography: Miguel Nacianceno Styling: Gwyn GS Guanzon Interior Designer: Chris Umali

A house owned by two sisters – Linda Medallo and Jovi Romero, stands in a peaceful neighborhood. These sisters are the ultimate best friends and business partners—so tight is their bond, they even live together under one roof with their respective families! Taking cues from hotels, they decided to divide their eight bedroom two-storey house with a public-private sphere in mind.  The “public” common area consists of the living and dining rooms, while each family has their own kitchen and garage. For the private areas, the home is divided into a left and right wing, each holding children’s bedrooms with adjacent master bedrooms.

With the help of their husbands and interior designer Chris Umali, Linda and Jovi selected interior finishes and space plans for the areas. Since they own a furniture store – Jovi is currently busy organizing the Philippine Hotel Suppliers Expo this coming September 26 along with the Chamber of Furniture Industries of the Philippines – all items found in the home were custom-made. At the second floor, rooms were customized for each member.  The end result is a home with a crisp, neutral color palette and an inviting feel—from the spacious plush sofa in the living room to the homey sitting area by the pool.

Original article by Rachelle F. Medina. Styling by Gwyn GS Guanzon. Photographed by Miguel Nacianceno.

Read the original article ("Family Ties") in the January-February 2005 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App ( now! Log on to for more details. 

Foyer A window is seen on the wall opposite the entryway instead of the usual painting or table of photos. A tubular steel rocking chair upholstered in rich black mohair sits at the foyer.
Living Room A common area, the living room contains a large sectional sofa in a tasteful neutral palette. On the wall hangs a forged metal sculpture by Ann Pamintuan.
Dining Area The dining area is clean and well-lit, with a plant adding a touch of life to the space. An interesting play of elements is seen - from the wooden sculptures to the glassware seen on the shelves.
Master Bedroom - Right Wing A gingham bedspread in neutral tones adorn the white bed. To keep the room personal, photos are displayed on open shelves.
Kiddie Bedroom - Right Wing A daybed is used as a full bed. The room is simple, with minimal furniture, accented in camel shades.
Master Bedroom - Left Wing The backlit wooden headboard in wenge finish immediately catches the eye. Pull-up sheer shades are of delicate lilac organza.
Kiddie Bedroom - Left Wing A matching look: from blue-and-green stripes to the roman window shades. One side of the room features a shelf to store kiddie stuff and essentials.
Kiddie Bedroom - Left Wing Detail The bed linen and other accessories follow the blue and green theme. The rest of the room is in white to emphasize the colorful accents.
Outdoor Area A sitting area in front of the pool is decorated with a zebra-patterned bench with an x-base and a camel-colored divan. To give the space an outdoorsy look, a bamboo screen made from an old TV cabinet door stands behind the divan.

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