New Manila was named after Quezon City’s southwest neighbor, Manila, and many affluent families settled in this area after the Second World War to escape the stress of living in the capital.
Visitors and urban explorers can still marvel at the old mansions in the area. Some of the mansions are well kept, but most are not, lending a poignant atmosphere to the entire district. The elegantly decaying mansions of New Manila give a romantic and mysterious spirit to the place. I love exploring the nooks and crannies of New Manila; it’s like walking through time.
History is indeed a wheel, and while it is true that in the past few decades, New Manila has been in constant decline, now, the district is experiencing a revival, both in popular interest and in real estate development.
Geoffrey Chua, the creative director of furniture gallery Dhalton Home, has seen the future in the glorious past, and in the ongoing revival of his home district of New Manila.
Last May 15,2015, Dhalton Home opened, calling itself a “furniture gallery.” It has distinctly curated furniture pieces chosen by Chua himself to mirror his ideals of luxury and elegance. The store is in the enclave of Robinsons Magnolia, right across its expansive gardens. Dhalton Home occupies three spaces of the ground floor commercial space of The Magnolia Residences.
Love and attention
Upon entering the gallery, you immediately feel the love and attention to detail the creative team has put in the design and creation of the space. The foyer has a gold-plated chandelier, its flooring made of the popular and locally-made Machuca cement tiles. The gallery walls are in light pastel colors: sea foam greens, light gray, browns.
You instantly feel at home and comfortable, something the creative director tells us is not an accident. “When clients and customers come to our gallery, I want them to feel at home. I want them to see the colors and feel the textures of our furniture pieces. I want them to feel comfortable and at ease, so that they may feel and see in person the ideals and vision of Dhalton Home,” says Chua.
The design origin of the gallery pieces is distinctly modern, with European and Asian influences. The store features exquisite hand-painted vases; some are lacquered wood vases like their Paulownia Wood Herbalist Jar Series, others are delicately kilned porcelain vases like their Gato Oro series.
“Modern design meets Old World charm and functionality” is how Chua describes their furniture pieces.
The distinctly designed Mozaico cabinet of drawers is an obvious reference to the quaint chinoiserie cabinets prevalent in English manor homes of the 17th and 18th centuries. The Carnarvon champagne cabinet is a hand-painted wooden cabinet lacquered fully from within and without with high-tech infrared lacquer booths to give it a mirror-like sheen. The Chester tufted leather sofas are an homage to the popular Chesterfield sofas in the United Kingdom. With its distinctive tufting method, hand-made in leather, and framed with sturdy hardwood, the design is a British classic.
The signature piece of Dhalton Home is the Elizabeth piece, a hand-painted peony console table constructed from solid wood, medium-density fiberboard, and sturdy hardwood, and then finished with their signature lacquering process.
Dhalton Home wishes to capitalize on and contribute to the revitalization of New Manila. New properties are being developed in the district. “The market and the area are now ready for luxury furniture and services,” said Chua. “And we want to be at vanguard of this resurgent movement in New Manila.”
Dhalton Home offers free interior design consultations to customers.
Follow Dhalton Home on Facebook: www.facebook.com/DhaltonHomePH. It is located at The Magnolia Residences Tower B Unit 3,4 and 5, N.Domingo St., Brgy. Kaunlaran,Quezon City, tel. nos. 0917-6563608 and 8061327.