A Tropical Feel for a Catholic Priest's Bedroom

Interior designer Andrew Galano surprised Fr. Paul Marquez of the Society of St. Paul with an improved personal space

Original Article: Tisha Alvarez Angluben Photography: Miguel Nacianceno Styling: Issa Villar Ching Interior Designer: Andrew Galano

For more than 12 years, we have received thousands of letters from Real Living readers that want to win their own free makeover. Since most of the letters are from small homeowners, young professionals, married couples, or returning OFWs, we were surprised to receive this makeover request from a Catholic priest!

In his letter, Fr. Paul Marquez of the Society of St. Paul says that after his priestly functions, he retires to his room exhausted. However, instead of feeling calm and relaxed in his private place, he often feels stressed. He wanted to replace the dated and drab-looking furniture. He also would like to get rid of the sheets of paper on his work desk and the old clothes in his disorganized cabinet.

To make the most of the tiny place, interior designer Andrew Galano drew inspiration from tropical design. He chose a refreshing color scheme and brought in brand new pieces. He also turned the area into a clean and organized haven.

Read the original article in the April 2007 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App. Log on to for more details.

Fr. Paul had shelves filled to the brim with books and covered with a shower curtain. His other storage spaces were also full of old clothes that weren't being used. To immediately improve the room, Andrew asked the priest to remove things that he no longer needed.

If we live in the same place for a long time, we get used to how everything looks and don't realize that things could be improved.

In this bedroom, Andrew noticed that the bed faced the closet and was perpendicular to the window. To achieve a better layout, Andrew moved the desk by the door and placed the bed beside the window and balcony exit.

Andrew also installed wall-mounted shelves that can be used to display framed photos and tropical accents like seashells and even a fishbowl with a live fish. 

Since the priest is fond of swimming and the outdoors, Andrew opted for a playful tropical look. Inspired by Fr. Paul's love of water, Andrew repainted the wall behind the bed turquoise, and another wall a slightly lighter shade of blue.

The freshly painted blue wall and a brand new halogen light helped highlight the homeowner's framed Malang prints. 

During the day, the room would be bright and well-lit. However, once the sun sets, the space would be too dim and dark.

Since the fluorescent light in the middle of the ceiling did not provide enough illumination, the designer replaced it with several pinlights embedded on the ceiling. 

If you look closely, you would also see that Andrew revamped Fr. Paul's old desk. The piece now has a distressed feel and bamboo-lined edges.

The old cabinet did not have enough space for Fr. Paul's clothes. To keep the priest's belongings organized, Andrew tore out the cabinet and turned the niche into a small walk-in closet. Instead of doors that swing open and took up more space, he installed space-saving sliding doors. In line with the tropical theme, the doors are covered with bamboo. 

How Much It Costs:

Shelving system, paint and paint materials, electrical materials, carpentry, ceiling fan, towel rack, etc. - P 23,826
Robinsons Department Store
Pillows, bed linen, picture frames, decor, etc. - P 15,580
Labor and construction materials - P 20,000
Grand Total:
Ready for your own makeover? Contact interior designer Andrew Galano through mobile 0917-796-0740.

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