Real Estate

An Italian Designed This Sustainable Condo In Cagayan De Oro

Did you know an award-winning Italian architect designed this mixed-use condo in CDO and other major provinces?

Photography: Primavera City Facebook page

We are familiar with Italian-designed furniture and bathroom fixtures that are available locally, and some of us can afford to buy those luxury pieces. But did you know that you can also buy an Italian-designed condo unit, and it’s not so pricey, too?

This condo that we are referring to is Primavera City at Uptown Cagayan de Oro in Mindanao, and it was designed by Romolo Nati, an award-winning Italian architect, sustainable developer, and former car designer for BMW and Mitsubishi. So how did a car designer end up creating a development in CDO?

The architect visited the Philippines in 2007 to introduce green architecture—not yet a byword back then—and met Atty. Jojo Leviste III, whom he partnered with to create Italpinas Development Corporation. At the Italy By Design talks hosted by Furnitalia at the Philippines International Furniture Show last March 8, Nati explained his vision for this type of development and why they concentrated on developing in the provinces.

They’d rather build in emerging cities and for the middle class

“We are interested in emerging cities in the Philippines, so we do not develop anything in Metro Manila,” explains Nati. “We see the opportunities in emerging cities…and Cagayan de Oro is a very fast-growing city. Our target market is the new rising middle class in the Philippines. More than 50 percent of them are below 24 years old.”

The focus is on green architecture and sustainability

All the condo and mixed-use developments use passive green strategies. The façade of Primavera has sunshades (brise-soleil) to prevent harsh sunlight from directly coming into the windows, and every unit is cross-ventilated. “Inside the building is a courtyard that enhances wind ventilation, plus we have solar panels on the rooftop,” says Nati. “So with all of these elements going together, the unit owners can save 20 to 30 percent on energy, because most of the energy in the Philippines is used for air con. So if you reduce the use of air con, you reduce the power consumption.”

There is also a pool located on the third floor, and wind comes in, passes through the water, and then goes up to the inner courtyard, creating a natural cooling effect.

Minimalist Italian design is used throughout the spaces


“The public spaces and units are in very minimalist Italian design,” shares Nati. “But it’s still a space that the unit owners can customize themselves.”

Italpinas is putting up more projects in other emerging provinces outside of Metro Manila, such as the Miramonti development in Sto. Tomas, Batangas (above), which has a resort-type feel to the design and planning.

For more information, visit the Italpinas website or Primavera City website

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