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Inside Cebu: Philippe Lhuillier’s Italian-Inspired Home

Philippe Lhuilier’s Italian-inspired home deserves a spot on the list of Cebu’s beautiful homes.

This story is taken from our archives. Originally published in the coffee table book, Inside Cebu. 

The entrance to Philippe Lhuillier’s home

After serving as the Philippine Ambassador to Italy eleven years, Philippe Lhuillier decided it was time to come home with his wife Edna and settle for good. Though they had spent many years residing in Manila before his posting to Rome, their roots were very firmly in Cebu. Thus, for their new home, they chose a site high atop a hill in Banilad—in the Maria Luisa Estate Park—which affords them a 360-degree view of the city below, the neighboring hills, and the nearby islands.

The home’s facade

The couple agreed to build in the style of a grand Italian villa. After engaging an architect early on, Edna and daughter Angie Miranda took over the design and decorating of the home. Already they had an intimate knowledge of exactly what the concept of the house would be.

The ornate wrought-iron gates open to a driveway that leads to the front doors. These, in turn, open to a soaring living area where two antique European tapestries (inherited from Philippe’s mother, the late Angelina Lhuillier) hang. The main room with its formal seating adjoins a wood-paneled dining room with windows set high on the wall, close to the vaulted ceiling. At the far side of the living room is a generously bottled wine cellar.

All the public rooms flow out to a lanai that offers more informal seating. Beyond it is the elegantly landscaped courtyard dominated by a large Achilles’ heel sculpture that the Ambassador found in a flea market in Italy. A swimming pool is set in a classical garden complete with Italian statuary and topiary accents.

On the second floor, the rooms open to a corridor flanked by colonnades. From here, guests can share the welcome breeze and look onto the courtyard, too. Scattered throughout the property are the remainder of the Lhuilliers’ extensive collection of statues, bas-reliefs, and other objets d’art —mostly from their travels. In pride of place, right outside the master suite, is a sculpture by Rome-based Filipino artist Doodie Diaz.

The master bedroom.

Ornate chandeliers and heavy draperies complement the classical artworks and comfortable furniture around the house. Though the art collection ranges from the highly detailed baroque to the neo-classic, the décor is not overwhelming, its cohesive mix of design evoking both luxe and the lure of comfort.

With its wood-paneled ceiling and snug leather couches, the billiard room can be the envy of any gentleman’s club—quiet, relaxed, and inviting as it is.

Living

Bunny Pages’ Classic Modernist Home is a Beauty

Cebuano businessman Bunny Pages has a lot of food brands under his belt. His hectic schedule had him wishing for a peaceful and uncomplicated home.

Living life on a full and hectic schedule, the owner of the house, restaurateur Bunny Pages, wanted to create an oasis where he can relax and pursue his love for cars. The outcome was an uncomplicated and compact house in collaboration with architect Ed Gallego.

On a steep slope in Maria Luisa Estate Park, the four-level home was cantilevered to conform to the contours of the terrain. Ceilings and doors were built tall, perhaps as the homeowner himself is on the towering side, and an open design was used to maximize open space, much to his liking.

The architecture of the house is classic modernist with touches of industrial. The view from the windows of the house, the ample ventilation, and a healthy dose of monochromatic colors make it breathe. Sliding glass panels blur the line between the interior and exterior.

The living room spills out into the dining area and the kitchen on one side. At the opposite end, the master’s bedroom directly adjoins the lanai and a den with a most advanced movie projector. The home theater system in here can actually rival a hi-tech movie house in terms of audio-visual equipment and acoustics. The lower levels contain the guest rooms for Bunny’s visiting children, as well as extensive area to house his growing car collection.

At the west end of the property, a soaking pool was built for one to enjoy the view of the city. It also overlooks the nearby island of Mactan. “This is where I have coffee in the morning,” enthuses Bunny. “And when the sun is down and the lights of the city come out, the view looks great.”

“The most interesting aspect of the house,” says Architect Ed Gallego, “is the garage located in the lower level to indulge the owner’s obsession with cars.” Indeed, Bunny Pages also often plays host to fellow car buffs in a comfortable lounge, which opens to the garage. On the same level, a huge room connects to a gym complete with state-of-the-art fitness equipment.

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Living

An Exclusive Look at 856 G Gallery Founder Annie Chen’s Artsy, Indochine-Inspired Home

In designing her home in Cebu, 856 G Gallery Founder Annie Chen wanted to create something that would give her comfort with a bit of pared-down luxury.

This story is taken from our archives. Originally published in Inside Cebu.

By profession Annie Chen is a jewelry designer as well as an art gallery owner in Cebu. She divides her time between her home in Singapore where she lives with her three children, and this home in her native city of Cebu. In designing her home here, Annie, wanted to create something that would give her comfort with a bit of pared-down luxury.

When the owner of this house decided to renovate the interiors, she specified to the architect that she wanted to bring the Indochine theme, which captivated her during a trip to Hanoi; there that cultural hybrid is quite evident. The entrance to the house is a barely perceptible gate in a cul-de-sac dominated by tall fences and breathtaking views of the Alta Vista Estate. Inside, however, the house speaks loudly of its owner’s artistic sense. She has had her house built as nothing more than walls to display art, thus, the interiors are pointedly stark, with bursts of color coming mainly from framed paintings, wall décors, vibrant-color fabrics, and rare antique pieces displayed quite imaginatively.

An avid collector of what could only be described as art exotique, Annie Chen has taken advantage of her many trips abroad to amass a wonderfully unique and diverse art collection. A pair of eclectic montages flanks the entrance door, radiating texture and immediately capturing the visitor’s interest. There are unglazed terra cotta jars and wood sculptures by Jet Florendo.

Many of the paintings are by Nepalese and Filipino artists. Complementing the gallery feel of the house, designer furniture is used in functional precision, as revealed by interior windows and thick-lattice wood-screens. A massive wooden table dominates the dining room as well as a Kenneth Cobonpue two-seater upholstered in bright silk. Most passages are discreet and set in playful floor patterns, but a wrought-iron spiral staircase with solid wooden steps leads down to the more private spaces— three bedrooms, particularly—all furnished and accessorized with natural vibrancy.

“I required romance in the interiors, but I was not also afraid of simplicity,” says Annie. The classic modernist architecture was designed to maximize open space. Says Architect Arsenio D. Abella, “A renovation is an update on an existing building. The architect’s duty is to link his discipline with the client’s dream, passion, and love of life.” And this he has done with remarkable results.

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Beauty & Wellness

Quick and Healthy Back-to-School Lunch Ideas Your Kids Will Love

Going back-to-school means excitement for kids but can be stressful for busy moms. Make life easier with these quick and healthy school lunch ideas.

School season is here! Going back-to-school means excitement for kids but can be stressful for busy moms as meal planning comes into play. Preparing baon for your kids can be a struggle considering both their picky tastes and the nutritional content they need to grow strong and healthy.

Check out these recipes from the Electrolux Life App to help spark ideas for healthy and delicious baon for your kids.

Cheese it up!

Since a lot of kids are not fond of eating vegetables, this Kid-Friendly Chicken & Broccoli Quesadilla recipe is a great way to add veggies in a way kids will enjoy. Start by placing Flour Tortillas on a plate, top it with cheddar cheese, add chicken and broccoli florets. Top it with another layer of Flour Tortillas then place it in a toaster oven at 350ºF and cook for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Cut the quesadilla using a pizza cutter, wait for it to cool and it’s ready to be packed!

Potatoes are usually a crowd pleaser so why not make the most of your leftover mashed potatoes by making Spinach and Cheddar Potato Cakes.

Simply mix together the egg, frozen spinach, seasoned salt, onion powder and ground black pepper in a medium bowl. Add the mashed potatoes, cheddar cheese, breadcrumbs, and fresh chives. Mix it well until breadcrumbs have been absorbed. Form a scoop of the potato mixture into patties and fry the patties in a non-stick frying pan until golden brown. For the sauce, stir together sour cream and fresh dill and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve the dip alongside the cakes!

Turning Japanese

Bring a Japanese flavor to your kid’s lunch with Teriyaki Pork Rolls with strips of green beans and carrots. In a pot of salted water, bring to a boil the thin strips of green beans, sliced carrot, and bell pepper for 2 mins. Once cooked, strain and dry with paper towel then set aside.

To make the sauce, mix soy sauce, white granulated sugar, and water in a small bowl and set aside. Take one of the thin pork cutlets and dust it with all-purpose flour on both sides. Add three of each of the green beans, carrot slices, and red bell pepper slices on the cutlet, season it with salt and pepper to taste. Then roll the pork and close it with toothpicks. Fry the pork until golden brown and remove toothpicks. Add the sauce, continue cooking for another 1-2 minutes until sauce thickened and all sides of the pork are coated.

Healthy Sides

Put a new and healthier spin on your kid’s snack time with this recipe of Baked Zucchini Fries!

First, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Cut zucchini into fries-like size, no need to peel them. In a medium bowl, combine panko, parmesan, salt, paprika, and pepper. Place whisked eggs in a separate medium bowl, and the flour in a third medium bowl. Dip zucchini pieces into the flour, then the egg, then the panko. Dip zucchini pieces into the flour, then egg, then the panko. Once all zucchini are breaded, bake it for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden and crispy. For the sauce, just combine the yogurt, cheese, mayonnaise, and chives to a food processor and blitz until smooth.

Preparing your kids’ healthy and tasty baon is easy with Electrolux kitchen appliances, like the Electrolux NutriFresh™ Inverter Refrigerators, which come with new features to keep produce fresh for longer. The new Electrolux NutriFresh™ Inverter French Door Refrigerator (EHE6879A-BPH) allows you to go from chilling the food to cooking them in minutes. With its special UltraChill -2ºC feature, it preserves the texture and nutrients of meat and fish for longer without having to defrost it.

Different food types require unique storage conditions to stay fresh and the new NutriFresh™ refrigerator comes with a FlexFresh drawer, an optimal storage compartment with five temperature settings (-23°C to +7°C). This enables you to store all types of food – from cheese and wine, meat and seafood, to cold drinks and frozen items – at the temperature they need to remain fresh.

To help retain the juiciness of produce, the NutriFresh™  Inverter French Door Refrigerator also comes with a TasteLock Crisper with AutoHumidity Control which automatically adjusts humidity levels depending on the contents of the drawer. The AutoHumidity Control releases excess moisture from the compartment to help keep fruits and vegetables fresh for up to 7 days. It also has a TwinTech Cooling System that cools the fridge and freezer compartments separately, so food stays fresher and odors don’t mix.

If you are looking for a cooking range, check out the Electrolux Cooking Range with Induction Cooktop & Electric Oven (EKI64500OX). It not only comes with a spacious layout to help you prepare multiple dishes at once, but also has powerful induction zones for speedy cooking and precision heat control that allows you to accurately set your desired flame for perfectly cooked dishes.

To get the full recipes of these dishes, download the Electrolux Life app on the App Store or Google Play store and click the ‘Recipe Finder Powered by SideChef’ within the app to access thousands of global recipes from SideChef’s database.

For more information on Electrolux and its products, please visit www.electrolux.com.ph and follow @ElectroluxPhilippines on Facebook and Instagram.

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