Tips and Guides

How To Create a Tropical Condo Home in 9 Steps

Living in a plain white box, several storeys above a noisy city street? Transform your small space into a resort-inspired home!


Read the original article ("10 Ways to Make a Tropical Condo") in the April 2011 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App now! Log on to for more details. 

Go for woven storage

Nix those ugly plastic boxes for now. Natural-colored woven boxes are an attractive storage alternative. Buy them in identical sizes. 

Say no to leather

Natural or synthetic leather sofas and armchairs are hot and sticky on the skin. Choose cotton upholstery instead, or use slipcovers on your leather seats. Light-colored cotton can make the room feel airier, as well. 

Pick beach-y access

If you can’t go to the beach, then bring the beach home. Use conscientiously acquired shells, or sculptural twigs to accessorize your home. 

Warm it up with nature

Most condo dwellers immediately go for furniture in metal or glass. Pick nicely proportioned furniture pieces in natural materials like warm wood, rattan, or a woven base to veer away from a “city” feel.  

Bring in foliage

A few plants in beautiful pots can give an instant resort vibe to even the most urban of condo units. Choose plants from the palm family for the ultimate tropical vibe. 

Pick playful hues

Try other fresh and zingy colors like Indian pinks and oranges, or nautical navy-and-white stripes. 

Add a daily dose of fiber

Replace your ordinary carpet with an area rug made out of woven fiber, such as raffia, seagrass, or hemp. It will soften your room and make it look less urbane, and help define small areas. 

Soften your shades with breezy sheers

Roll-up shades in apartments often look too office-like. Soften your windows with white or beige-colored sheers, which can also visually enlarge a room. 

Paint one wall green

If you’re not a green thumb, then go the artificial way—paint an accent wall a refreshing shade of green. It will add punch to the tiniest of rooms. 


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