East meets West in this 75sqm unit

Chinese celadon jars and Scandinavian chairs make for a delightful fusion in this tranquil space

Original Article: Katherine Lopez Photography: Jun Pinzon Styling: Issa Villar Interior Designer: Lisa Salvador

Ideas can spark from anywhere—magazines and books, one’s style preferences, the expert advice from a professional can lead to an inspired abode that truly reflects one’s individualism. And with interior designer Lisa Salvador, the design of her client’s Makati 75sqm condo unit came from celadon wares. “She didn't give me any clue about what she wanted,” admits Lisa. “All she said was, ‘I have a lot of celadon wares.’ I picked that up as a design inspiration for the entire condo unit.”

Lisa describes the unit's look as a mix of Asian and European styles, combining her client's celadon wares and her own "obsession" with Scandinavian designer Hans Wegner's Wishbone Chair during that time. "It's like a mix and match. It looks like a period style na it has European items with a twist of Asian," says Lisa.

Storage and space always pose a challenge in any condo unit, so Lisa made sure there was enough—for instance, in the living room, the television sits on tiers of shelves that are concealed by a sliding door. The calming color palette of beige, oatmeal, and Tiffany blue was also key in achieving the unit's polished vibe, keeping it from looking claustrophobic. The final look is one that’s certainly a refuge from the urban jungle, a cohesive blend of Asian-European flair.

Original article by Katherine Lopez. Styling by Issa Villar. Photographed by Jun Pinzon.

Read the original article (“Chinoiserie Chic) in the March 2011 issue of Real Living Magazine. To download a digital copy of Real Living Magazine, visit Summit Newsstand at

An Overview of the Unit

There’s no concrete divider separating the kitchen, dining, and living areas, but the zones are clearly defined by individual decors and fixtures that both work independently and still seamlessly flow together in one space. A long pendant lamp illuminates the dining area. The wall mirror not only makes the space look bigger but also work as a strong wall accent.

Living Area

The dark brown-and-beige combo is soft accented by sage green patterned throw pillows and curtains, as well as the texture-rich woven rug that injects an Asian flair. A final Chinoiserie touch comes in the form of a contemporary clubfoot Chinese center table.

Living Area Detail

Off to one side of the living area is a black-and-cream armoire where the owner’s celadon jars are proudly displayed. A framed painting of flowers in vibrant shades makes the space less intimidating and impersonal.


The kitchen reflects the homeowner’s quiet and conservative demeanor, with wooden cabinets and a white-tiled backsplash that works to lighten the space. Overhead cupboards are a great idea to maximize space and make room for more storage in a cramped apartment.


Ladylike luxe is the vibe that exudes from this pristine bedroom. Lisa was inspired by a temple design she saw in an old book, and she updated it with a few modern touches such as the hotel-esque fabric for the duvet and draves and the headboard finished with a pale green hue. The raised Chinese fretwork details on the wall subtly prevent the room from being too fussy.

Bedroom Detail

Another modern touch that Lisa added to the bedroom are the mounted frames against the white walls.

Cozy Corner

One corner of the bedroom was transformed into a makeshift home office, with floating wall shelves and an extra-long desk mounted on the wall—fabulous space-saving tricks where there’s not plenty of room.

Pseudo Walk-In Closet

The main challenge with condo is usually space, and Lisa worked with this concern by knocking down a portion of the bedroom’s wall for more storage space. The pseudo walk-in closet leads to the bathroom. A full-length mirror helps to visually enlarge the area, while a subtle ceiling lamp lends a cozy glow.


Dainty handles are a key feature of the cabinets, which Lisa describes as “traditional Chinese, but it was done in all-white and ducco finish, so it was very European.”


A pale palette made up of marble and white and beige is the perfect canvass to add your personal stamp.


Latest Stories

5 Secrets Of A Functional Kitchen

Are you dreaming of having the most efficient scullery? These tips might just do the trick.

11 Peg-Worthy Celebrity Christmas Trees

From showcasing dainty blooms to using quirky ornaments, these personalities have taken the decorating game to the next level

This Quiapo Day Tour Will Make You Love Old Manila Again

Go on a DIY Quiapo adventure and look beyond the vendors. Say a prayer, have your fortune told, take a peek at a mysterious pagoda, and visit beautiful ancestral houses from a more genteel past.

10 Ways To Make Your Shoes Last Forever

Show your favorite pairs some tender loving care with these tips

A One-Bedroom Unit Transformed into a Two-Bedroom Home

The designers of this 45sqm condo in Manila created a functional space with an urban contemporary appeal that’s perfect for its young occupants

Here's Why You Should Skip Bringing Your Phone To The Bathroom

Trust us, liking that photo on Instagram can wait for a few minutes

7 Planners For An Inspired 2018

Stay organized and keep your goals in sight with these picks

These Christmas Ornaments Will Make You Feel Like Dancing

Celebrate a yearly Christmas ballet tradition with The Nutcracker collection

15 Calming Photos of Modern Minimalist Homes

Because less is more

10 Life-Changing Cleaning Habits For Lazy People

We've got the strategies for keeping an impeccably clean house without losing your mind

Did You Know That Ellen Adarna Lives in a 1930s Apartment in Manila?

She has a fantastic view of the Manila Bay sunset, too

Neat Home Appliances You Need To Buy With Your 13th Month Bonus

It's okay to treat yourself with the best things money can buy—especially if it is for your humble abode
Load More Stories

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