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Architect designs travel photos-inspired bedrooms

By Angela Casco

Who says no one can travel even in the middle of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) outbreak?

An architect has made it possible to do so—at least without having to physically leave the house—through his travel photos-inspired bedroom designs.

“Since we’re not allowed to go out of town or to travel anywhere, I made bedroom design ideas based on my travel photos,” Mark Estrella wrote in his now-viral Facebook post.

The post features a series of photos from his previous travels, unique color palettes based from the pictures, and bedroom design executions. Featured travel destinations include Cebu, Zambales, Ilocos region, Quezon Province, El Nido in Palawan, Bohol, and even Manila.

The 21-year-old freelancer architect and avid traveler says he has been looking at his past Instagram posts while in home isolation when he thought of doing the design project.

“I miss going out of town,” Estrella tells Manila Bulletin Lifestyle. “I have a bunch of friends who also love to travel like me and because a lot of our plans for this year have been cancelled, I thought, ‘Why not tour them with my travel-inspired interior design work, so they can feel like they’re still travelling?’”

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Travel photos, the architect adds, are also naturally colorful, hues that he would normally not use in his previous projects.

“I always use wood and concrete as materials, and neutral colors on furniture,” he says. “Using a lot of color is not my style so I wanted to challenge myself and go out of my comfort zone through this.”

Estrella has initially thought of interpreting his travel photos in every space inside a house but eventually chose the bedroom “because it’s easy to play colors” in it.

For what seems like a quarantine design exercise, the architect says color combination and clever use of materials are key.

“As you can see in the photo of Quezon, I used sunset as an inspiration for the false ceiling cove light, the dark wood as the color of sunset, and light colors for the furniture to have some contrast or color balance,” he explains.

The same is true for his Zambales-inspired design, which features a color scheme of green and beige, commonly seen in nature. His interpretation of the Ilocos travel photo, meanwhile, shows a combination of gray, white, black, and brown elements with touches of neutral colors.

The realistic renders, created through SketchUp, Vray, Adobe Photoshop, and Lightroom, have been shared over a thousand times—a kind of reception Estrella says he “is not used to” but is thankful for, nevertheless.

“I did not expect the number of shares that my post got,” he says. “I just wanted to share my ideas. Some even messaged me saying that they like my style and the way I design.”

The freelance architect says all of his summer travel plans with friends and family have been canceled due to the Covid-19 outbreak. He hopes for the pandemic to “end soon so we can go back to normal life again.”

While things are nowhere near normal yet, Estrella stays isolated at home but travels through his designs.

Source: Manila Bulletin (

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