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Known as the Pearl of Mindoro, Puerto Galera is blessed with the one of the world’s most beautiful natural harbors. It is world famous for splendid beaches, coral reefs, and exquisite dive sites for new and experienced divers alike. It is known among tourists for its numerous pocket beaches, as well as snorkeling spots. It is not hard to understand then why Puerto Galera’s charm appeals to everyone. And this is where Bill Lutt, an American producer, and his Cebuana wife, May Grace, chose to build a home.

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Referred to as the “mansion” in Puerto Galera, the Lutts’ home is a few minutes away from an area called the Sandbar where private boats can dock. The structure is grand and hard to miss. The property molded itself onto the rolling terrain through several layers’ a driveways, gardens, huts and finally the main house with four floors. Generous windows and large doors that mark the faade take a very contemporary form and somehow belie the “little Asia” inside.

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Going up another floor, one finds three bedrooms— a large suite and two smaller ones, referred to as the Filipino room and the Indonesian room (after the sourced pieces that form their general theme).

The large suite takes a more Japanese style when it comes to details. All are blessed with thick cushions, comfortable beds and television sets. One can stay in and just enjoy the silence of Galera, occasionally catching up on the news and one’s favorite show.

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Essential to the house is the angular wooden staircase that runs from the ground floor up to the attic. A grand window allows sunlight in with a beautiful view of a Muelle. Along this climb are niches on the walls that accommodate freestanding art, like a collection of wooden giraffes, a metal bird sculpture and a polished rock from the Ganges River, among others. “We still haven’t figured out where to put most of the art pieces we have,” shares Bill, “we may even actually commission an artist to create pieces specifically for the house.”

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Looking out, the expansive tiered garden holds an infinity pool, a volleyball court, strategically located benches and a water fountain, all enveloped in lush greenery. A few steps from the pool is the game room where a pool table and a foldable ping pong table are stored.

After the shoot, we gathered for a sumptuous dinner prepared by May Grace. Bill brought out good wines for people to share. When asked why they chose to build in Puerto Galera, Bill had this simple answer, “We fell in love with the place, and we’re thinking of sharing property with friends but with exclusivity.” And while exchanging stories and a few more laughs, we couldn’t help but agree.

Style Secrets of the Manor

DESIGNER:

Ed Rivera and Ed Ramirez

DESIGN CONCEPT:

A fusion of Asian styles with a contemporary feel

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS OF THE VIEWS:

A home that is warm and relaxed, with lots of windows to take advantage of the views

COLOR SCHEME:

Neutral tones with splashes of colors in different combinations per area.