Tips and Guides

5 Homes with an Old World Charm

Take a peek inside these vintage-inspired spaces and be transported to the past


While most prefer the clean lines and sleek interiors of contemporary homes, there are some who'd love to showcase our glorious past by choosing vintage and colonial-inspired styles for their dream houses.

If you’re thinking of adding a hint of the past to your space, here are five homes with a distinct old world charm that you will surely love. With some of the vintage elements kept intact, you will also get a glimpse of our rich culture.

Main photo by Rene Mejia.

A Renovated Ancestral Home

In this 1926 ancestral home, interior designer and owner Ricky David opted for a renovation with the goal of showcasing subdued colors, abstract art, and contemporary furniture.

Area We Love: The Dark Orange Dining Room

The minute you step into this area, the orange walls will immediately catch your attention. The space highlights a custom-made modern dining table and antique chairs that were spray-painted black. To balance out the ancestral vibe, a couple of contemporary pieces were likewise added. The other side of the dining table has a bench to accommodate more guests during meals.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

A 139-year-old Ancestral Home Transformed into a Charming Bed-and-Breakfast

When Architect Robert Arambulo acquired a 139-year-old ancestral home in Batangas, he was determined to retain its Old World charm while adding modern accents. The result is Villa Severina – a bed-and-breakfast with a French-Asian vibe and vibrant pops of color.

Area We Love: Stone Landing of the Grand Staircase

This part of the house gives you a certain feeling that you’re about to go back in time. Architect Arambulo kept the original stone landing as well as the stairs itself. Nine holes were bored through the planks of the second floor so that the 19th-century tenants could see who was coming to visit without going down the stairs.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

A Heritage Home Restored to its Former Glory

Located in the UNESCO heritage city if Vigan, this home fell into disrepair. To restore it, reconstruction took three years to finish. The house was stripped to its shell; its foundation reinforced with steel and covered with concrete.

Area We Love: The Lower Level Sitting Area

The setup looks cozy and inviting while the heavy wooden shutters let sunlight stream in. Amidst the colonial-style pieces, an authentic Indian bench was added – a must-have when expecting a lot of guests.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

Historic Bahay-na-Bato Restored to Spanish Colonial Era Glory

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Casa Caridad was built in 1872. The owners restored the structure by going for old-school methods like using wood and bricks for sectional repairs and combined powdered lime and egg whites as plaster to cover the eroded walls.

Area We Love: The Main Living Room

This area highlights butaka chairs and a round table while light shines through the sliding windows.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

Spanish Colonial Interiors in a Pet-Friendly Four-Storey Home

In this 100sqm home, the owner chose to build his home upward – resulting in a classically-designed four-storey abode. The house is made of nostalgic architectural elements like decorative wood pilasters, pierced latticework panels, and sampaguita glass windows, to name a few.

Aside from creating a home that showcases his passions, the owner also had to take into consideration his prized cocker spaniels as he wanted them to live comfortably, too.

Area We Love: The Kitchen

The traditional brick counter will instantly remind one of how meals were prepared in the olden days. Completing the look are the copper cooking essentials that are stored and illuminated under the counter and the kitchen island inlaid with mother-of-pearl.

Click here to see more photos and view the complete home tour.

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