Manila's newest furniture design and lifestyle boutique opens in Ortigas, and the creative couple behind the new furniture design and lifestyle boutique is Kristine Neri-Magturo and Mike Magturo. Kristine, a licensed interior designer, is the director of product development and styling at Urban Abode, while her husband is in charge of operations and business development (he is also the head coffee connoiseur--yes, coffee is served in this little store!).
Located at CW Home Depot in Julia Vargas, Ortigas Center
Owners Kristine Neri-Magturo and Mike Magturo
“Design the true you into the spaces that you breathe.”
"When we started the design of the store and the furniture, my husband was telling me, 'Design something that reflects your own personality, your own style,'" Kristine shares, "and that we need to sell something that we would buy for our own house, for ourselves." The couple decided to complement their existing custom furniture design services by transforming a two storey space in Ortigas into a charming retail space. Inside Urban Abode, there is a feel of industrial, and a certain je ne sais quoi--it's like it is both familiar and new, like I have been to some place similar but perhaps just in my mind. It feels old and homey, but at the same time fresh and clean and new. Whatever it is, it's utmost charming.
Inside the boutique
The showroom on the second floor
"We describe it as rustic chic, it's rustic and it's modern," Kristine tells me. Laid back and casual, Urban Abode is a design and decor destination that does not intimidate. You immediately feel at home with its warm vibe, and you're free to tinker about their different items, and to explore every nook and cranny that offers something from all sizes and shapes to spruce up one's living space. The aromas of freshly ground café luongo style coffees entices you even more to linger for a cup or two.
Lakeside collection living room
Rustic Chic: Sheldon chair, upcycled Hansel wooden wheel table, and barn light torches
Vintage wooden shoe last
Assorted angels (P550 to P780)
Inspiration, innovation, and leisure
Urban Abode manufactures all their furniture, all locally made in their shop over at Quezon City. Some materials such as selected fabrics used are imported, but Kristine shares that they really try and make use of Philippine-made materials. In need of furniture overhaul? Schedule a furniture design consultation at Urban Abode, and also have a look at their many inspiring products that have the Filipino style and craftsmanship take center stage.
Burlap bins (P650 each)
Fun gift idea: Bamboo helicopter amplifier (P800) serves as both home decor and your mp3 player's volume booster
It is perfect timing that this boutique opened shop by year-end, when everyone is looking for unique gift ideas, and different ways to spruce up one's abode (perfect too, for those starting the upcoming year by redesigning their space). When asked about ideas on how to jazz up one's space without spending too much, the designer shares that one can always accessorize. "Just adding accessories like throw pillows and throw cushions can liven up the space and change the look right away," she says. Another tip from her is to have a color theme in mind. "Have a theme of color, but that doesn't have to mean painting a wall or a major redesign because it's going to be too expensive. If you have a theme of color, you can add it to the accessories, paintings." Even old magazines or books just lying around the house can breathe new life into a room. Arrange them and cluster them with its colorful covers and spines for an easy and creative vignette.
Assorted Pillows in Canvas, Tikog, and Burlap (P1,100 to P1,350 each)
Spiral Lamps (from P3,300 to P4,300)
Barn Light Torches (P3,500 each)
Wall accents with locally made frames, and figurines
Living in a condo or have a smaller space as an abode? Kristine reveals that when what you have is small, just go big. "Sometimes they feel that if they have a small space, you tend to buy small items so as to make their room look big. It's really not the case," she says. Her philosophy? Always go big. "It bounces off everything," she explains, "Let's say you have a small room but have a very lush sofa, it both livens the space and makes the space seem bigger also."
Space savers: these Tikog Ottomans (P1,300 to P2,300) made from tikog straw also serve as containers
Floral and Jute Ottomans (P8,500-P9,500 each)
A smattering of colors can be seen at Urban Abode, so customers can easily find something for their home in their favorite shade. So it was a surprise for me to discover that Kristine's favorite color is actually gray. "My personal favorite color is gray, my son's name is Gray!" she laughs, "His name is Grayson Lucas. I like grays and l like whites. If it's gray sometimes they feel like it is sad or serious, but it's not. It can liven things up, it can make something look very modern or urban."
Whether you prefer to color your home in different shades of gray, replace drab furniture with locally-made bespoke furniture pieces, or breathe new life into your room by accentuating it with one-of-a-kind home accessories, this new lifestyle boutique is worth a visit. Do some holiday gift shopping at Urban Abode while you're at it!
Consultants in custom furniture design and fabrication, and purveyors of handcrafted home accessories, Urban Abode is open daily from 10am to 7pm at the CW Home Depot Complex in Ortigas. Like them on Facebook (urbanabode.manila) and follow them on Instagram (@urbanabode). For more on owner-designer Kristine Neri, visit www.kristineneri.com