See How This Old House Transforms To A Dream Home

An old dwelling gets modernized with a mid-century makeover


Everyone loves a good renovation story.  It is always interesting and inspiring to see a transformed space, just like this home we will be featuring. A house that used to have three levels, it is now converted into a bungalow with a loft for a young family.

Upon their engagement, the wife’s parents gifted the couple with an old house. The couple is both busy with their professional lives, as they are both involved in managing their family businesses in real estate, fisheries, and the hospitality industry. With such busy lives and a two-year old child in the picture, they decided to renovate their old home. “This is our dream home. It may be far from the hustle and bustle of Metro Manila, but it’s quiet and has a laidback feel to it,” says the wife.

To design their future home, the couple enlist the help of their friends, architect Jaemi Cruz and Jesy Cruz of Alero Design Studio. The couple considered Jaemi and Jesy as family because the duo’s parents are their godparents in their wedding. “We are big fans of their work and we share the same ideas when it comes to design. We didn’t think twice anymore,” they add. The contractors were covered because the couple has a construction business on the side, enabling them to become quite hands-on with the project.

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A large, light-toned sofa centers the living area. White and shades of green and blue give color to the space, providing a refreshing backdrop against the wall of wood. “All of the panels were a gift from my tatay, from his collection of old wood,” shares the lady of the house


The brother-sister team’s full-service design hub humbly started in Bulacan, moving on to multiple commercial and residential commissions both in the province and Manila. Jesy is the face of the firm and coordinates with clients, while Jaemi handles the backend to ensure each project runs smoothly.

Jaemi and Jesy admit that it was quite a challenge to retain more than half of the old structure, roofing, and most of the exterior walls, especially as this was their first major renovation. They gave photos of the design that they wanted to the team and Jesy knew that they should go for a mid-century style. The couple wanted a modern space that was still warm, cozy, and welcoming.

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The dining area is clearly one of the favorites of both homeowners and designers because of its open, relaxed ambiance. Set against a beautiful kitchen, it features a large dining table that was also a wedding gift to the couple


Jaemi believes that a space looks bigger if you can see both ends of it, rather than having several divisions in it. They decided on an open layout, using window partitions as seen in the formal and service kitchens. To open up the interiors, they added windows and it even allowed for outdoor views.

The main living area welcomes guests upon entry, while straight ahead is the main attraction of the house: the dining area. As one moves through the space, there is a pantry, the service kitchen, a powder room, the toddler’s bedroom, and a playroom.

Knowing that the couple are set on to have more children in the future, the designers already planned for the conversion of the spaces in the years to come.

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The master bedroom is a completely new addition to the original structure. Done in cool shades of blue and gray, it provides a calming oasis for the couple after a long day


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A walk-in closet opens to the master bath, which is done simply but laid out efficiently in keeping with the homeowners’ busy lifestyle


The loft, which now serves as the family room and home office, will be turned into children’s bedrooms when the time comes. With another child on the way, they have also decided to convert the current playroom into another bedroom.

The couple also wanted a light and airy home with ample space for their kids to play both in and outside their house. There is a wide patch of green in front where they can turn it to a pool in the coming years, as they want enough areas to relax in and to entertain guests, too.

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Vibrant colors characterize the toddler’s bedroom, which also has its own bathroom, study area, and wardrobe


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As the couple likes entertaining guests, the designers provided different sitting areas on the patio that wraps around the house. Colorful chairs share space with more neutral options, both standing out against the lush lawn


Their new home affects the day-to-day life of the couple. They both work at home sometimes, since they manage their family businesses.  They love that any area in the house can be used for both work and leisure.

While the new house is indeed a modern masterpiece, the designers say there must always be a marriage between form and function. As much as possible, the designers try to make them work together. “For us, a space must be as useful as it is beautiful,” Jaemi shares.  This lovely family home is proof that they have achieved exactly that.


This story first appeared on MyHome Inspiring Interiors Vol. 3, edits have been made for