The dining room, along with the kitchen, is actually an extension of the house. In the original floor plan, this area used to be open bare space. The dining room and the kitchen were only added when Benjie decided to have some renovation work done in the house two years ago.
In the center of this dining room, surrounded by 10 red heavy upholstered seats, is the hefty dining table made of ipil.
“We wanted a table na buong [ ipil] tree, ’yong walang cut,” Benjie recalls. “It took eight people to carry this! We went to Tagaytay pa. Naghanap talaga kami. Makikita mo ’to, raw, as in, ando’n lang nakatambak. So, mamimili ka ng size, ’tapos ’tsaka nila aayusin. Kaya solid talaga.”
Benjie recalls that they went to Tagaytay because most of the suppliers that they visited in the metro sold wooden dining tables at steep prices. “May nakausap kami, sabi sa amin, ‘Sir, pumunta kayo Tagaytay,’ kasi do’n naman nakukuha lahat. Nakita nga namin, almost half the price.”
With its immense size and weight, the dining table is practically fixed in its place. Rearranging it would be next to impossible. With a laugh, Benjie says, “Basta naka-set na siya diyan, that’s it. Wala nang galawan.”
With its sliding glass doors and expansive glass windows, the dining area is bathed in natural light. “Pinataasan ko na ’yong ceiling,” Benjie says, referring to the cathedral ceiling of the dining area. “Gusto talaga ng wife ko, ganyan, para maliwanag.”
The lush bamboo trees lining the perimeter of the house render a nice, natural, outdoorsy ambiance. “Ang problema lang niyan, natatakpan niya ’yong araw. Pero maliwanag pa rin naman.”
To mark the demarcation between the living and the dining areas without having to erect dividers or walls, Benjie opted to have wood-look tiles for the flooring of the dining area. These tiles are not made of wood, but are actually ceramic tiles that simulate the rustic beauty and texture of real wood.