RL Makeovers: A Fresh Look for a Once-Flooded House in Marikina

After typhoon Ondoy, a retired couple’s living and dining areas are transformed into elegant spaces

Original Article: Katherine Lopez Photography: Miguel Nacianceno Pictorial Direction: Dagny Madamba

The home of the Celzo couple in Marikina was not spared from the wrath of typhoon Ondoy which hit the country in 2009. Zenaida Celzo, a retired professor, recalls that they were sleeping then, and they felt something cool on their backs. It turned out that water was already rising inside their house. Zenaida recalls that they had to flee to a nearby house just to be saved from the typhoon.

When they came back, the flood left their house covered with mud, with almost all of their furniture destroyed. As much as Zenaida and her husband Bernardo wanted to renovate her home, they did not have enough money to spare because they were already retired. Since Bernardo had a stroke and is diabetic, while she has a slipped disc, the monthly pension that they are receiving is only enough to cover their medical expenses.

To help them get a much-needed home makeover, Zenaida and Bernardo’s son Edwin wrote an entry to Real Living. When they were chosen, Zenaida was worried at first that they might have to spend for the makeover. But she had nothing to worry about because architect Mia Quimpo and her team, sister and design consultant Joy Quimpo-Ramos, and contractor DB Lagman Construction, gave them a beautiful home well within the Real Living makeover budget. 

Original article by Katherine Lopez. Pictorial direction by Dagny Madamba. Photographed by Miguel Nacianceno

Read the original article ("A Storm Weathered") in the July 2012 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App ( now! Log on to for more details.  

Since Zenaida’s favorite color is green, Mia used an interesting avocado shade for the walls.
The old piano was moved from the dining room into the living area. It was also painted white for an updated look. The old center table was also repainted black to make it more sophisticated.
Mia replaced the old wicker sofa with a new sofa from Crossings Department Store. She also advised the homeowners to fill throw pillows with old towels to make them look better. The design team kept the area spacious so that Bernardo and the couple’s grandchildren can move around freely.
The design team moved the TV from one part of the room to the accent wall. They also built customized open shelves to adorn the wall. The look is completed with a clock from Crossings Department Store.

Before the makeover, mismatched photo frames were placed in different corners of the house. The design team advised Zenaida to stick to gold and silver when choosing the frames to match the home’s elegant look.
To fill the new shelves in the dining area, Zenaida found hand-painted plates from her collection. Mia and Joy used the top of the narra cabinet to showcase more of Zenaida’s beautiful accessories, like the gasera and another tea set.
The solid narra dining chairs used to be on one side of the dining area. Now, the antique dining set holds a place of honor in the middle of the space. Use accessories that will suit the home’s theme

How Much It Costs:

Crossings Department Store
Sofa, mirror, vases, and various accessories - P 60,000
Labor and Materials
Construction materials and carpentry works - P 64,794
Grand Total:

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