Modern Contemporary Style redefines a Batangas Beach House

A couple veers away from the usual with a fresh and unexpected concept for their vacation home

Original Article: Katherine Lopez Photography: Ocs Alvarez/ACME Visual Productions Pictorial Direction: Issa Villar Architect: Dan Co Design Consultant: Cynthia O’Sullivan

An ordinary beach house is often constructed according to the rules of tropical design. However, with its clean and streamlined style, Cynthia and Sean O’Sullivan’s space is anything but ordinary. The couple built a three-storey building that reflects their personal style while still maintaining the same relaxing appeal vacation homes are known for.

The 600sqm property designed by architect Dan Co feels airy and spacious because of its open plan layout which resulted in free-flowing spaces. The homeowners and guests are also treated to full, unobstructed views of the breathtaking surroundings because there are no solid walls. All of the areas are enclosed only by clear glass and walls and highlighted by simple lines, minimal pieces, and clean spaces.

Read the original article ("White Hot") in the April 2013 issue of Real Living Magazine. To download a digital copy of Real Living Magazine, visit Summit Newsstand at


The modern facade of the 600sqm property reveals that this is not your ordinary beach house. The streamlined shape is complemented with clean, straight lines and clear glass windows.


The black front door decorated with a splash of red opens to white steps that lead to the sunken living area.

Living Area

Cynthia O'Sullivan filled the living area with clean lines, which are typical of modern homes. Textured pillows, colorful accessories, and a gray area rug adds warmth to the space.

Color Scheme

A full view of the first and second levels of the Batangas home shows how the white space is complemented with glass and steel details and pops of bright color.

Living Area and Kitchen

Since the couple loves to entertain, the living and kitchen areas are strategically placed next to each other. The open layout allows them to prepare drinks and snacks while talking to their friends and relatives.


Cynthia also designed the kitchen cabinet and had it customized according to her specifications. Every cabinet was supposed to be red but some of the pieces turned orange. The supplier replaced some of the cabinets with new red ones, and retained the others that turned orange, resulting in a striking two-toned modern kitchen that stands out amid white interiors.


The lanai remains faithful to the color scheme of the house, with white seating pieces, red seat cushions, and the red and white stools. A custom-made leaf lounge chair piece becomes the focal point in the area.

Dining Area

The O'Sullivans' dining area is bathed in light because of the bare glass windows and sliding doors.

Dining Area

A custom-made, multi-legged dining table designed by Cynthia is accompanied by a mix of all-white dining chairs and benches.

Second Floor Detail

For a whimsical touch, colorful pompoms hang from the ceiling. The wall of the second floor is decorated with a set of nude sketches.

Second Floor Detail

On the second floor, a colorful abstract painting that seems to be inspired by the beauty of the beach brightens up a plain white wall. The set-up is completed with a pair of red chairs.

Master Bedroom

An all-white palette can look more exciting with the use of different finishes. In the master bedroom, red-colored accent pieces with gleaming glass and metallic materials make the area more pleasing to the eye.

Master Bathroom

Although moderate in size, the master bathroom becomes interesting because of the details that include a bathtub perched on a platform and a long bathroom counter with sink. To provide contrast in a predominantly white area, red towels and bathroom accessories were used.

Guest Bedroom

Unlike the other parts of the home, the guest bedroom is completely in white for a striking minimalist look. The absence of color creates a calming atmosphere.


The balcony offers a breathtaking view of the clear blue skies and the sparkling ocean close to the home. To highlight the beauty of nature, the space is simply furnished with a single woven chair with a red seat, red stools, and a red table with silver legs.

Roof Deck

A part of the roof deck has been transformed into an entertainment area that can be used for parties and reunions. The covered space is furnished with fully-upholstered black seats topped with black and white pillows.


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