Learn How This Tropical Dream House Fits Everything In It

A designer creates a dream home for her family with her magical touch


Loubelie Gardiola, a designer, will always ask you to guess the shape of her lot is. It does not seem to be the most significant question ask first, as there are so many other things that will catch you attention in her Batangas home.

Behind the tall, dark wooden gates, you will see the distinct three-storey house that is surrounded by lush greenery. It has floor-to-ceiling glass windows, an impressive koi pond by the entrance, and the small waterfall beside a green wall.

There is a heavy Indian door that serves as the main entrance, which will lead to a vast, well-lit space. Inside, there is a small area where to receive guests before they can proceed to the main living area. There are tufted furniture pieces and luxurious fabrics meet wooden slats and natural stone accents. These pieces and fabrics are grounded by neutral palette of whites, beiges, and browns. There is also a resort vibe in the color scheme, using natural elements that are all illuminated by the sunlight streaming in through the windows.  

tropical dream house
The intricate Indian door reflects the resort appeal of the interiors, welcoming guests to this home with an old world charm


tropical dream house living area
The combination of high ceilings, stone-clad walls, wooden furniture, and a neutral color scheme create a contrast of grandeur and calm. The view of the lush landscape just outside the glass windows is bringing everything home


Loubelie couldn’t find a chandelier that goes with the space that also works well in a resort look.  So they use a cluster of floating lights framed by dark wood functions as a unique, artistic addition.  “We got these lights instead, broke them apart, and installed them one by one on the ceiling.” She says.

Aside from the lights, there are only two elements that stand as dark contrasts to the predominantly light color scheme: a Peter Maly bookcase, and the main staircase with its deep-toned metal railing. “I got this from Miguel Aguas. I like how it looks like an art piece that also doubles as railings,” Loubelie explains.

The dining area is located behind textures stone walls. It houses high-back side chairs, winged host chairs, and crystal chandeliers. Loubelie also injected local elements, such as the abaca candelabra and rug.  A modern kitchen is also found beside this space. This kitchen space creates a stark contrast to the antique double doors beside it, which leads to the staff quarters. There are plush apple green seats and multiple pendant lights that break the white walls and ceilings.  This is where the family can be found during mealtimes. The designer shares that the low kitchen island countertop provides a very comfortable spot for easy meals and conversations.

tropical dream house
The designer practiced restraint in the dining area with its subtle palette and clean lines, but incorporated indulgent touches as seen in the accessories and décor


tropical dream house
All areas of this home are maximized fully, such as the second floor sitting area where friends and family can lounge about. Darker toned furniture and accessories create a sleeker feel compared to the more tropical-themed spaces


The home theater found on the main floor is another favored area by the family. This place is where her husband unwinds, Loubelie says.  It is smartly concealed by a false wall. The space also breaks away from using a lot of natural elements found throughout the house. Blue and green walls provide a burst of color in the room which is still align with the resort ambiance.  

The natural aesthetic is still found in all the bedrooms on the second floor.  There are wood floor planks and large windows that offer outdoor views. There are also a lot of furniture pieces and these pieces also have secondary functions. A couch in one of the kids’ rooms serves as both window seat and shoe storage. “I want everything to have its own place in the house. This was one of the things I specified when the house was being built. Ayoko ng makalat, para maganda tingnan,” says Loubelie.

tropical dream house
Even the kids’ rooms are made with function and aesthetics in mind. Despite very few and simple furniture, these dual-purpose pieces elevate style with practicality


The master bedroom is purposely simple because Loubelie wants to put a king-sized four poster bed from Indonesia as a centerpiece. There is also a large walk-in closet that is connected to the bedroom. Bright and spacious, it can double as a workspace and mezzanine, with a hallway that culminates in a luxurious bath with his-and-hers lavatories for the couple.

tropical dream house
Adding to the regal appeal of the four-poster bed are gauzy curtains and luxe sheets. These elements soften the feel of the wood predominantly used in the master bedroom


Occupying the top floor is the family room, with a slatted portion of the ceiling for lighting, and teal chairs around a makeshift dining table. The room beside it has views of the Taal volcano, making it the perfect spot for Loubelie to paint and store her finished artwork.

tropical dream houuse
Brightly colored chairs provide a break to the all-wood motif in this space, taking off from the vibrant artwork that adorn the walls


tropical dream house
Loubelie’s room with a view is where her art happens. Here, grand views provide inspiration for her many creations


The structure is surrounded by lush landscaping; with a tropical-themed pool is the main attraction. This is surrounded by different plants species sourced from Quezon and Laguna.  Loubelie designed the outdoor areas herself and transforms the garden into an al fresco dining area whenever the family entertains guests.

tropical dream house
Situated by the main door, the koi pond can be enjoyed by guests while in the living area. It provides a calming feel that the homeowners wanted their home to imbibe


A tour of the house, with its surprising corners and additions, makes it almost impossible to guess how the home’s layout completely looks like. So when her guests can’t answer her question, Loubelie just smiles and says that the property is actually shaped into a slim rectangle. This may seem like an unimpressive answer at first, but inspires awe when one realizes that she laid out the house in a diagonal zigzag to accommodate the different areas of the house. Instead of resorting to a typical rectangular layout, she was able to create many interesting areas and combine it with a lush landscape that embraces the structure.

More than their house’s overall design, what Loubelie and her family love about their sanctuary is the mark of home in every corner. “My husband and I go to Manila for work, but we choose to go home here every day because the house is a place we want to come home to,” she finishes.


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