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These Homeowners Spent $16K Creating A Rattan Ceiling For Tropical Island Feels At Home

22 March 2024 | BY

From the rattan ceiling to the beautiful woodwork, this beautiful tropical island home reno will remind you of your last beachside vacation.

These Homeowners Spent $16K Creating A Rattan Ceiling For Tropical Island Feels At Home

From the rattan ceiling to the beautiful woodwork, this tropical island home will remind you of your vacation in a resort along the White Beach coastline in Boracay. In fact, there are plenty of nifty features here made possible through painstaking planning by the homeowners that draws from their Filipino heritage.

Lovers of Southeast Asian interior design styles, you’ll want a few pins of this home on your mood boards.

$16k rattan ceiling for island vibes

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There is plenty about this home that will remind you of resort suites like the ones in Amorita Resort, most of all being the rattan ceiling above you.


The favourite part of the home reno for the homeowners, @madeinchaichee, this rattan ceiling took a lot of effort to make possible.

To start, these panels are made in Malaysia with natural rattan, and the beams had to be specifically constructed and laminated to go with the panels. As they could not receive samples of either element in time, they had to make do with intelligent guesswork. It paid off in the end though, when they first saw it coming together on the day the panels and laminates were installed.

They had to figure out suitable dimmable light fixtures, which the husband wanted, that were small enough to fit in the beams as well. All in all, the ceiling renovation amounted to a cool $16K.

But that was not the end of it, as the nature of it being natural rattan meant they had to make special arrangements to maintain it.

An ongoing labour of love, this means having to control the home’s humidity at about 40-50%, which is accomplished through the use of a dehumidifier. Too much moisture in the home would mean the rattan runs the risk of developing mould.

And as it was also sensitive to temperature changes, as large fluctuations would make it brittle and susceptible to damage. They largely maintain the ambient temperature in the home by keeping the air conditioner on most of the time.

The need for temperature regulation also means that living room windows are almost always closed. The main door or the toilet door would be opened if they really need to air out the place. They would also dust the rattan panels every month and apply an insecticide to avoid unwelcome infestations.    

Plenty of artistic details around the common space

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One of the homeowners, who has an Indian heritage through her father, expressed a desire to honour that part of her cultural background in her home. The outcome is a stunning piece of art, crafted from intricately patterned sari fabric. This fabric, carefully reclaimed and pieced together, forms a captivating mosaic that pays tribute to her heritage.

artwork close-upA close-up of the embroidery and sequins on the sari fabrics.

tv console

The TV console, like the rest of the home, is a visually appealing blend of the modern coastal and boho styles. The rattan door helps add to the resort-oriented theme too, whilst the shade of the wood for both the floating shelf and the TV console itself are kept nicely consistent with the ceiling beams.

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Look around the home, and you’ll find plenty more small, thoughtful details; from the ornate knobs, artwork, furniture design and other small decor, a lot went into the intricacies of the design here to create a wonderfully Filipino charm.

tropical island home 8A very attractive and elaborate herringbone-style weave can be found on the seats of the dining table chairs.
tropical island home 9Image credit: @madeinchaichee

A less labour-intensive but equally important aspect of the reno was that the homeowners knew they wanted to keep the entryway tidy, so these tall cabinets were made specifically to store their shoes.

Aesthetic curves to accentuate the home

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While not the main focus of the design, the home features several aesthetically pleasing curves that enhance its overall appeal. The rounded corner in the kitchen adds a contemporary flair and cleverly delineates the space while maintaining the open-concept feel of the common area.

The archway leading to the bedroom corridor is another subtle yet effective touch, adding character and a dash of elegance.

Resort-worthy bathrooms with a playful dose of colour

resort bathroom

If this Philippine beach house renovation hasn’t already whisked your imagination off to Amanpulo, the bathrooms certainly will. With their travertine and pebble flooring, the stacked stone walls, and a louvre door, they encapsulate the essence of what you’d expect at a top-notch resort.

Adding to the relaxed atmosphere is the arched mirror, which introduces a playful and whimsical touch to the space.

vanity sink

The basins themselves are a worthy mention, made out of glazed ceramic pots repurposed into vanity sinks. The shine and the deep blue colouration is very much evocative of the oceans you’d admire on a beachside vacay.

tropical island home 13Little windows with floral designs line the side of this sink.

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The master bathroom takes a bolder approach instead, with a richer colour palette that the homeowners describe as “Mediterranean”. 

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The heavily textured tiles of uneven dark teal shades definitely are a treat to see, and the depth given by the texture and pattern almost makes you feel like you’re on a dive somewhere along the Palawan island coastline. The bronze grouting here helps give it that nice tropical weathered feel as well.

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The dark teal colouration is then contrasted with both a natural stone tan as well as these equally dramatic terracotta tiles. These terracotta tiles are the genuine article, and were chosen over cheaper faux terracotta as they wanted the particular shine they produced under the light.

bathrom details

This bathroom is heavily adorned with decor to add a personal touch. Alongside the familiar arched mirror, there’s a collection of artwork gracing the floating shelf and what appears to be a capiz shell lamp, enhancing the room’s unique charm.

The vanity, intriguingly crafted from a repurposed ceramic pot, boasts a textured exterior reminiscent of a wind-weathered boulder. Its earth-red coloration seamlessly integrates with the bold, Mediterranean-inspired palette, unifying the space’s overall aesthetic.

Kitchen that blends Filipino flavour with luxe vibes


Whilst the design aesthetic is reduced in the kitchen in favour of a more modern setup, there is nonetheless plenty of herringbone wood laminate here to keep the place in theme with the rest of the house.

The sintered stone countertops were a detail that the homeowners particularly loved, and the backsplash here that are arranged to resemble chevrons is pretty neat too.

tropical island home 19The wooden decorative items and accessories in this kitchen help add a bit of character.

The bedroom is decidedly simple, comfortably spacious, and with the mounted TV, is perfect for a couple that indulges in a good show or two. The bed frame itself is a prized possession of the homeowners. A bonafide story of love at first sight, they recounted seeing it in a Bed and Basics Hari Raya Sale for about 30-40% off.

They wanted it so much that they had bought it 6 months before even buying the home, and asked them to hold it for 10 months in their warehouse before finally being able to move it in here.

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Inside an $83K Tropical island home reno

We’ve covered a bunch of resort-style homes here at Uchify, from a one with Canggu vibes, to a recreation of a Balinese villa, and even a home with a pool larger than some BTOs. But this $83K Philippine Beach House Reno is certainly impressive for having been done inside the compact space of an HDB flat. 

If anything, perhaps readers could take this as a sign to look into recreating their own favourite vacation destinations for their next reno too.

For more inspiring homes:

Photography by Chan Hui Wen.

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