Cover The Ed Ledesma designed structure makes use of extended roof canopies with a narra wood finish in warm contrast to the Italian travertine stone cladding. Oversize Kenneth and Mock windows and sliding doors add to that feeling of lightness

Alice Eduardo opens home and heart, giving us a peek at her exceptional new residence that is designed to welcome loved ones into her sanctuary of peace

Coco Chanel once said, “An interior is a natural projection of the soul.” This declaration could not be truer when speaking about the new home of Alice Eduardo, astute businesswoman and philanthropist. The three-storey, seven-bedroom structure is as expansive and generous as her spirit, with exceptionally tall ceilings and vast panoramic windows that look onto the lush garden.

“I really wanted space, big rooms and bountiful light,” shares Eduardo. “I wanted to make sure that everywhere I looked, I could see greenery and sunshine.” The main home is designed by Architect Ed Ledesma and embraces the natural elements. Travertine stone slabs were personally selected in Tivoli, Italy by the homeowner and are seen in both the interior and exterior of the property. “I felt they added a unique blend of mountain-born beauty to the space,” she says.

Bringing warmth to the stone is the earthy narra wood panelling that covers the canopies at the main entrance and lanai, as well as the interior ceilings. “I love the richness of narra wood and how it brings a sense of comfort,” says Eduardo.

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One of her favourite features is an impressive cascade wall on the right side of the house, which runs from the ground floor to the lower ground floor. “The sound is so soothing and reminds me of the sea,” she says. “I really wished to hear the waterfalls from all the rooms.” Water is an important element of the home, reflected in the wraparound pond at the entrance and in the long lap pool, jacuzzi and fountain in the garden. The luxuriant tropical vegetation was landscaped by Ponce Veridiano and is meticulously tended to by one of Eduardo’s long-time landscapers. 

 

She worked together closely with Architect Ed Calma on the interiors, deciding on neutral earth tones all over the home to provide the perfect canvas for her exceptional art collection. “I love all my art pieces!” exclaims the avid connoisseur. Unique and majestic pieces from Philippine masters adorn her walls, bringing vibrant life and colour to the space. Flanking the entrance are a soulful piece by Juan Luna from his Chula series, a spectacular and fiery Jose Joya and Ang Kiukok’s fusion of cubism. Other paintings are Filipiniana scenes by Vicente Manansala, several superb works of Benedicto Cabrera’s Sabel, Romulo Galicano’s figure paintings, ethereal works from Romulo Olazo’s Diaphanous series and Juvenal Sanso’s dreamy landscapes.

 

“It’s hard to choose a favourite, but if I had to, it would be the Anita Magsaysay in the dining room. I find the colours so enchanting. There is this translucence and luminosity to the painting that almost makes it seem like it glows,” she says. Other notable artworks are displayed throughout, such as several sculptures by Ramon Orlina, Michael Cacnio and Eduardo Castrillo. She also has a large collection of antique vases, pots, and jars. The large vessels are filled with verdant foliage. She is particularly fond of her fiddle leaf fig tree plants which are notoriously high maintenance. “I have three sets of all of them and rotate them regularly so they can thrive and flourish,” she shares.

The construction magnate is an incredibly busy woman, “I’m very hands on with my projects and personally visit the sites. I often meet with my clients, my engineers and my staff in the afternoon as well, but I always make sure to be home for dinner with my family,” Eduardo says. The mother of three stresses the importance of family time: “I’m also very close to my parents and have breakfast with them every day.” The entertainment area in the lower ground floor is where she spends the most time with them. “My daughters with their cousins and friends love hanging out in this area especially in the wine cellar!” she says.

Although Eduardo claims that she has so many favourite areas in her home, she still has a soft spot for her bedroom. “It’s where I can be myself and have some all-important “me-time”. The main highlight is the accent wall behind the bed covered in the most sumptuous of De Gournay wallpapers: hand painted with a gilded sheen, with hand-embroidered flowers strewn across, adding that exceptional luxurious elegance. 

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“This is truly my dream home as I was able to put all my concepts and ideas in one place,” she shares. “This is also my sanctuary, and serenity just exudes from every corner.” Despite it being her haven, Eduardo is in fact happiest when she opens her home to her friends and loved ones. “I get a real sense of fulfilment when my guests have a wonderful time here. It truly brings me joy,” she says. This sentiment is an excellent example of what sets this spectacular home apart from other upscale residences because nothing can be more luxurious than the abundance of kindness that emanates from the heart of it. 

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This story was originally published on Tatler Philippines' September 2021 issue. Download it on Magzter for free.

  • PhotographyScott A Woodward