THE BAR, made of kamagong, narra and slate chips teamed with Moroso bar stools, on the roof deck is in a faux rock gazebo made of fiberglass. The surfaces are made of renewable materials. Droplights by Stelz.
Chavit Singson has soft elegant style (would you believe?)
Since Ilocos Sur Gov. Luis “Chavit” Singson loves to entertain, practically his entire home—the gold-clad nine-story Torre del Baluarte—is devoted to public space.
Although the façade has been done by several architects, he tapped young interior designer Theresa Lasala and her associate Christine Victoria Lazaro to work on the interiors.
Fresh from the San Francisco Academy of Art University with a Master in Fine Arts in interior architecture and interior design, Lasala brings some of the “San Francisco look”—neutral interiors with tile floors and sculptural furniture, often upholstered in simple yet sumptuous materials. Lazaro, an Assumption graduate in interior design, selected the pieces to create a masculine look with soft touches.
The design team explained that Torre del Baluarte in Vigan, Ilocos Sur, remains a work in progress. They’ve completed the roof deck with a sunset bar, the eighth-floor formal dining area, the master bedroom on the seventh floor and the living room on the third floor.
The living room was prepared in time for Singson’s 70th birthday last June 21.
Each floors has circular layout with glass curtain wall that offers a sweeping view of Vigan. Every room has a dramatic architrave to frame the view.
The 400-sq-m living room has a black-stained narra door, with kamagong borders, mounted as if floating on glass.
The main area is defined by black Italian tiles. It has drop ceilings—arranged to look like sculpture—and narra flooring for warmth.
The elevator hall is divided by a large black graphicote panel adorned with tubular metal installation, designed by Lasala and Lazaro. The pillars are done in Zebrano veneer while the dominant columns are clad in white mother-of-pearl to serve as contrast against the black tiles.
“The living room is a mix of modern retro with Filipino touches,” says Lasala.
The retro look is created by the choice of furniture, mostly curvilinear, with leather, wood and lacquer finishes. The style is emphasized by the curves of the halogen architectural lighting called Skydro by Artemide. Modern classics such as Mies Van der Rohe white Barcelona chairs and George Nelson’s black Coconut chairs make strong accent pieces.
There are four main islands of furniture with the grey puzzle sofa at the center, all of which are configured to the room’s circular layout. This enables visitors to move around and sit anywhere with ease while savoring the panorama. There are additional intimate seating areas near the glass windows that overlook the landscape.
Soft and homey
Lasala says the understated elegance is proof that the masculine domain of mid-century style can be softened. The palette is modernist white and black, but it has softer shades of taupe and yellow.
The Natuzzi leather chairs and the round tables are of warm colors and curvaceous.
The angular effect comes from the divider and Barcelona chairs.
The area rugs are in various textures—silk, leather, polyester and cowhide.
“The governor may have a strong personality, but at the same time, he’s got a soft heart. We added strong colors like red and yellow in the pillowcases and grey in the sofa, and black in the flooring. But we made it homey with narra. We wanted to show his stature using luxurious finishes like the mother-of-pearl and leather. For sparkle, the steel and aluminum Artemide chandelier gives it a modern edge,” says Lasala.
The dining area, which can accommodate 70 people, has white graphicote walls and silver travertine flooring.
The visual focus is a round glass dining table with Poltrona Frau rectangular leather and metal-plated chairs that follow the body’s shape. A mushroom-like chandelier made of Murano crystals hovers above the table.
This vignette is flanked by pearlescent pillars, artistically wrapped with metal tubes.
For added drama, there are buffet and bar consoles made of lighted onyx with narra counters.
The designers added smaller dining spaces, coffee seats, lounge chairs and sofas around the room.
The roof deck on the ninth floor is one of Singson’s favorite areas for relaxation. It has a gazebo built with fiberglass rocks. Lasala used renewable materials such as bamboo and stamped concrete for the flooring, slate for the bar, and added a green roof so that Singson could putter around the garden.
The furniture pieces in masculine brown have bold red and orange accents, again reflecting the governor’s personality. At night, the roof deck glistens with lighting on the banquette and light cubes from Flos, Italian lights.
What the designers have achieved is to portray Singson as a man of power, yet with relaxed elegant style.
A videoke and mini theater will soon be built on the sixth floor. Guest rooms on the fourth and fifth floors, the spa on the second floor and the reception area on the ground floor are still in the drawing board.
(TL Design Studio Co., 230-A El Grande Ave., BF Homes, Las Piñas City; contact nos. 0922-8931035 / 0917-7515741 / (02) 8931035, e-mail: [email protected])