LIVING LA VIDA LOCAL.
A FAMILY CREATES A QUAINT TAGAYTAY RESTHOUSE FOR THEIR WHOLE CLAN
A twobedroom, wood-toned Tagaytay resthouse is inspired by classic Filipiniana style with a modern twist.
AFilipinos love heading up to Tagaytay, coming for the view, and staying for the cool, fresh air and its relaxing atmosphere. It was for those reasons that Ibsen and Karen Borlongan decided to not just visit Tagaytay as tourists, but also to have a place there to call their own.
When they purchased a two-bedroom unit in this city two years ago, they knew instantly that this wouldn’t just be any ordinary rest house for the small family of three, but it would be open for the entire Borlongan clan. Built in what used to be a forested area, the low-rise condominiums are still seemingly nestled within the woods. Grace Moslares, who decorated the home, states that it was the view that inspired the interiors of the house. “When I saw the place, I thought that it looked like a mini resort. It’s what I saw outside that became my inspiration for the inside. It felt Filipino modern.”
The homeowners gave Grace free hand to do what she wished with the space, and she set about dressing up the unit in a Filipiniana style, but with a modern touch. “Since the view was our starting point, I brought a lot of wood tones into the space—from the pieces of furniture to the décor.” It is, indeed, one of the first things that one would notice when entering the space—there’s a lot of mixed wood, with splashes of color to brighten up the natural palette.
The living area is the first thing you notice, with a sofa made out of metal and rattan dominating the space; it's one of the few pieces in the home that’s not made of wood. Grace explains, “One of my concerns when I was designing the place was how to coordinate everything, especially the living area and the kitchen, because there weren’t any walls to separate the areas. The placement of the sofa, in particular, was problematic because it couldn’t be near the kitchen cabinet, but I didn’t want it interfering with the view from the balcony. The see-through design of the sofa made it possible to not obscure the view.” A pair of lighting fixtures made of capiz and designed by Grace hangs above the area.
Beside the living area is the kitchen, which is predominantly black due to the appliances, the backsplash, and the built-in kitchen counter. The modern feel of sleek, black cabinetry was mixed in with the wood cladding of the kitchen counter, giving it a Pinoy vibe. Grace used different types of local wood, like yakal, molave, and kamagong, for specific types of furniture. The kitchen counter also doubles as an informal dining area, with custom-made chairs tucked into it. It’s a great space saver, and also gives the family more sitting areas. “The only requests of the Borlongans were to put in as much sitting areas for their whole family, and to maximize and utilize the sizes of the beds,” Grace recalls.
The two bedrooms share the same modern Filipino aesthetic, but with splashes of blue and yellow to break the wood tones. The beds—made of gmelina and molave—also have pull-out trundles to accommodate more guests. Sweet
additions, like little poufs that serve as extra storage and decoration, as well as colorful floor rugs, add a touch of the occupants’ personalities. To maximize the space, Grace went for sliding doors, which can be conveniently pushed in and out of view to give the illusion of a bigger room.
The view, of course, is quite breathtaking. The family’s corner unit affords them a slightly roomier balcony, directly above the pool area, giving them more space to soak in the greenery and the clear blue skies. It’s no surprise that the couple wanted their dining area here—nothing beats sharing meals al
fresco, with the grand scenery as a backdrop. A custommade gmelina dining set, which can withstand harsh weather, completes this simple luxury. Grace says, “I love this space, but this dining area in the balcony might be my favorite. It’s the perfect way to enjoy everything that’s special about this home. You get to relax and be one with nature.”
A recurring motif of pieced-together bits of wood can be seen throughout the home, as seen in the custombuilt breakfast nook and frames. Grace went for all-black cabinetry and a black-and-gray mosaic tile backsplash to contrast with the warm wooden tones. Get similar mosaic tiles like these at Wilcon Depot.
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