Check Out This Courtside Reporter’s Chic and Multifunctional 21-Sqm Unit!

On his first condo project, the pressure was high for architect Jaime Recto not only as this is his first design stint, but also as his first client also happens to be one of his closest friends—courtside reporter Billie Capistrano.

After passing the board exams for architecture, Jaime started his own design firm called BURP! Designs. Billie was his first client, who also happened to be his girlfriend’s best friend since kindergarten. Aside from her courtside reporting stint, Billie is also fitness instructor on the side and is involved with her family’s shipping business as well.

BURP! Designs

Billie’s personal space is actually located inside her family’s condo unit in Makati! The 21-sqm area is her bedroom, which she turned into a space of her own. “She’s a sporty urban girl, she’s very active and she goes out a lot,” explains Jaime. According to Jaime, Billie invites friends over often so it was important to create a space in the unit where she can hang with her friends.

BURP! Designs“This unit used to look like a typical bedroom. There was a bed in the middle and a couch by the window. She had a lot of stuff from their previous home and this room used to be cluttered,” says Jaime on how the space used to look like.

The main goal of the renovation was direct and simple: to provide Billie with more storage“She wanted the unit to look clean, and so we took advantage of the renovation somehow as her way of decluttering,” Jaime explains. 

BURP! Designs

“When we started with the unit renovation, I would go here almost everyday and consistently pester the suppliers and contractors offsite. It was more delicate because aside from being my first, it was also for a friend,” he shares.

Prior to the renovation, Billie wanted a SoHo-look inspired by New York City’s most fashion forward neighborhood, South of Houston street. The SoHo style is described as a mix of artsy bohemia and modern elegance. Billie wanted a Brooklyn-type flat with bricks, but was still chic. To fulfill her wish, Jaime created a brick wall on one side using thin, light tiles. “The problem with condos is the drywalls. You can’t put heavy things on them like what you can do with regular houses. We had to reinforce the walls with architectural studs,” he explains.

BURP! Designs

BURP! Designs painted the walls and ceilings white for a brighter feel. They retained the unit’s original floor layout, but added built-in cabinets and a modular bed. The bed system has mini steps attached to it, which also functions as storage.

“We really tried to maximize the space in every possible way. The whole bed has dividers and cabinets that go all the way through for added storage,” says the architect.

BURP! Designs

Another consideration Billie had was to have a space where her favorite niece and nephew can play. “Billie is almost like the kids’ personal babysitter. What they’d do before is push the furniture aside so they can play in the room,” explains Jaime. With the renovation, the design team was able to open the unit and provide Billie with more space where she can spend time with the kids. “If you open her modular bed cabinets, you’ll actually see that’s where the kids’ toys are. She’s super family-oriented.”

BURP! Designs

After a month, BURP! Designs was able to create a private and cozy space for Billie right within the corners of her family’s unit! Her old bedroom was transformed into a a multifunctional space where she can exercise, do yoga, play with her niece and nephew, and entertain her friends.

“It’s like a mini studio—she really has a place in the house that’s all her own,” Jaime concludes. 


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