Winter the professor is a busy bee. Apart from teaching Math, being the adviser to university scholars, and working on community development projects on weekends, Winter also has investments in real estate and the stock market. The 29-year-old professor finished her doctoral degree at a top university in Manila, and now enjoys her teaching job and her side-jobs as a landlord and an Airbnb host.
“My boyfriend and I are Airbnb guests and we’ve seen both appealing and unappealing rentals. So, when we decided to venture into hosting on Airbnb, we opted to hire a professional interior designer to dress up our space. Luckily, one of my students recommended his girlfriend, Ira,” Winter says. Interior designer Ira Pilario is one-half of the duo behind IxM Design Studio.
When asked about her favorite Airbnb listing, Winter mentions a tropical house in Cavite where she and her boyfriend spent a weekend. “It’s so beautiful that it inspired me to have a place like it. I even told the host, Mrs. Lim, that her house inspired me to get into Airbnb,” Winter shares.
Inspired by the tropical vibe of her favorite Airbnb listing, Winter asked Ira to dress up her space with a light and neutral palette that are both easy on the eyes and calming. She also asked Ira to incorporate plants into the space to somehow achieve the tropical feel of Mrs. Lim’s home.
“She wanted the look of my previous work which was Scandinavian with lots of greenery accents and prints. With this unit, I made it distinguishable by mixing elements of farmhouse and Scandinavian design,” Ira shares when asked about her inspiration for the unit’s design.
She adds, “Winter wanted the condo to represent her personality and style even though she’ll have it for rent. She has a busy work schedule as a professor and barely has the time to do anything else,
so she wanted a space with lots of greenery and will remind her of the outdoors.”
While there was no major construction done in the unit, original structure and layout, paint, and tiling are retained due to budget limitations and time constraints; Ira injected accents of brass and green into the neutral color scheme. Home accessories are also kept simple and in theme with the color palette.
The dining area that can seat two is predominantly white with warmth from the wooden legs of the two chairs. A brass-trimmed mirror hangs above and adds a touch of elegance and luster to the otherwise flat dining area.
Across the dining area is the living area where plants from Winter’s mother take over. “I really wanted a tropical feel in this unit, so I put in a number of plants from my mom’s plant collection,” shares Winter. Plants adorn the rental unit from the entryway to the bedroom.
The furniture pieces are mostly Scandinavian style, save for the bed frame in the bedroom that’s in a farmhouse design. “We painted the bed frame black to make it more interesting and striking in juxtaposition with the gray night tables,” says Ira. The surface of the night tables are removable and can function as a tray.
“We also added wall lamps to the bedroom. However, instead of directing the lamps to the bedroom switch, we made it so it operates like the usual lamp with its own switch. It’s a trick to get the wall-mounted lamp that you want without having to hire a contractor or do a major construction. It’s also cheaper!” Ira shares.
Ira took a week to finalize the unit’s design, but the project took a month to finish from the initial schematics to the final touches and turnover of the project. She also shares that the most tedious task was canvassing for affordable yet stylish pieces to put in the unit, mostly due to budget constraints.
“Working with Winter was really fun and smooth because she trusted me with everything. However, I made sure that she’s included in the whole process by sending her photos of furniture and décor for her approval,” shares Ira. “They were very pleased and happy with the overall look,” Ira concludes.
Indeed, the look and feel of the unit has charmed both local and foreign travellers. Since the enlisting of the unit on the rental platform, many have commended the clean and cozy Scandinavian chic rental condo.
Visit this listing on Airbnb
Tour Inside More Scandinavian Style Condos