This 41-Sqm Marikina Condo Looks Like It Came Straight From Pinterest!
All weekend homes have one purpose—it should be a place where one can unwind. A refuge away from the hustle and bustle of the metro. Wife and mom of two boys Cristina Ng crafted her own haven in nautical chic and tropical style, where she could rest and escape to every weekend.
She lives in a townhouse in the center of Manila with her family, but purchased a unit in the outskirts of Marikina as a weekend home. “I like how quiet it is here. I feel that even at midnight, it’s safe to walk around the area. There are also many restaurants and food stalls nearby. Every time we’re here, we get to discover new places. It’s really fun!” she shares.
Purchasing the unit was also a sound investment given her family’s active lifestyle. With a sports complex right across their building, they can easily head out and enjoy time together. “For only P5.00, we can already use the oval for as long as we want. We all exercise together on weekends—that’s one way of how we bond as a family,” Cristina shares. Primarily though she calls this her own weekend hideaway. “Minsan, ‘pag makulit na ‘yung mga bata sa bahay, parang middle of the week nandito na ako,” she shares with a laugh. “I find my quiet time here.”
This 41-square meter unit can be described as a mini version of the family townhouse—almost a far-off extension—but with some tweaks in the design. Cristina asked help from interior designer Mark Madolaria, who also crafted the interiors of their house. “This is our second project together and we’ve known each other since,” says Mark. The two have grown close since and now are proud gym buddies.
Upon purchase, the unit then looked outdated with old wood parquet flooring and dark walls. But the two-month renovation completely altered the insides of the unit, making it unrecognizable from the original design and layout. Initially a two-bedroom unit, the designer and the owner agreed to remove one of the bedrooms to make way for a larger and more open entertaining space.
“I wanted it to be something I could look forward going home to. I wanted it bright and airy—‘yung malamig sa mata—so I told Mark that I wanted the unit in very light colors,” says Cristina.
As one enters the tropical unit, a refreshing palette of green and white is an instant energizer from the bustle of the city. The green accent wall with large palm leaves serves as the unit’s centerpiece. “I am inclined to all things floral and tropical style even when I was a kid,” she states. The stunning accent wall was hand-painted by a professional muralist following Mark and Cristina’s design direction.
“The accent wall became the design anchor of the unit, with the style evolving from nautical chic into a tropical style look, until it grew into a laidback home like this,” explains the interior designer.
The kitchen and dining area exude a relaxed feel, with the colorful patterned tile flooring making it even more homey. A shiplap wall finish was supposed to be used in the space, but the designer opted for textured wallpaper in a similar look to keep expenses down.
Thanks to their proactive contractor and Mark and Cristina’s eagerness, the nautical chic slash tropical unit was finished in no time. “I always look forward to our sourcing day,” she shares. “It’s relaxing to look at all these ideas and furniture pieces to choose from. It’s a visual feast.” When asked how the process of working together for a second time was, both owner and designer agree, “It’s not considered work. We consider it our playtime. Actually, mas work pa ‘yun workout namin.”
This weekend home has become both an extension of the family home, and of Cristina’s personality. “It has to show who you are and what you like. If it’s an expression of yourself, then you feel more at home, more relaxed. It’s good that my husband and kids appreciate it also,” Cristina concludes.
This story first appeared on CondoLiving’s March 2017 issue. Edits were made for CondoLiving.OneMega.com