Sunday, May 22, 2011

House hunting

Yesterday, Vince and I took Vito house hunting. After all, we really don't need to look for a new home since we already live in a fabulous apartment with west-east-south views and fantastic location. The only problem with our place is it's in a high-rise and a little boy needs big wide spaces to run around in and conquer. So since this is for Vito, it's actually Vito's house we were looking for!

The first place we went to was Kapitolyo, which is our home's backyard. We liked that it has the same conveniences of our place (in the middle of everything!) but we didn't like the security. Or the feeling of lack thereof. So that leaves us with the two other choices:

Mahogany Place 3 is a DMCI project about 5 minutes from Bonifacio Global City. The benefit of living there is that it's near BGC, near St. Luke's Global (I'm a bit of a hypochondriac), near Makati CBD, near good schools.

Even though it's near everything, it doesn't feel like it's in the city. DMCI acquired the vast Acacia Estates and turned it into a residential development that has a resort-like feel. And I'm not quoting a press kit here. That's how we really felt! Security is tight. There's even an electric perimeter fence surrounding the entire development! The amenities are superb, the roads are wide and beautifully paved, there are clubhouses, commercial playgrounds, swimming pools and more.

Little boxes on the hillside
Tiny kitchen and dining area
And that's all there is to the living room!
Three bedrooms, one of which is decorated like a boudoir
A walk-in closet makes up for the teensy-weensy bathroom.
So here's the catch: Mahogany Place 3 is lined with townhouses and duplexes, narrow buildings that stretch upwards. The land may be wide open but the houses feel, I dunno, I feel hemmed in. Vince says they remind him of London. He spent a few of his growing up years there and he said it was fine. We'll see.

Ametta is a community development by Ayala Land or Alveo. It's gorgeous there! The townhouses are designed so that they feel open and airy. There's plenty of light pouring in through big windows into spacious rooms. There are parks and pools, pocket gardens and playgrounds, and wide streets perfect for a little boy with a bicycle!
Blessed space!
Construction is done well.
Side view of the house we really liked
Big kitchen with lots of counter space
Spacious master's bedroom with walk-in closet and own bath
Two bedrooms, one for the princess...
... one for the prince!

The problem with Ametta is its location. It almost feels like there's no rhyme and reason for its location. It's like someone built a beautiful village and dropped it in the middle of nowhere. The nearest schools, malls, shopping centers, hospitals are a good half hour away. Plus, it's in Pasig and during Ondoy, that area was flooded for a week. To combat this, Alveo built the community on land raised a full storey high and is currently improving the drainage system of the entire area--the streets around the village are all dug up right now. That's reassuring. And yet... scary still!

Vince and Vito and I had fun!
So we're still thinking about Mahogany Place. If only the houses were built like Ametta and had a location like Mahogany's! That would've been perfect. Oh well! The search continues!


  1. I am so excited for you and Vince!
    We went house hunting for exactly 2 years until we found "the one". It's been 3 years since we moved in. Location is our primary consideration, then the kind of neighborhood, and living space. After seeing newly developed and old properties, we came to realize buying an old property in good condition will address our needs and budget. After soooo many site visits, 2 could-have-beens, we finally got what's best for us. I can say that if a house is for you, you will feel it and everything will easily fall into place. Good luck and enjoy the hunt! :) Be patient and it will come at the right time.

  2. Grabe, it's like looking for your one true love! But we already found it with our apartment. We super love our place! Except that, if we want to have more kids, this place just won't cut it. Sigh!

  3. Don't worry Frances, you'll find the perfect house for your darling Vito. It shouldn't be anything but perfect and I know that you will find it soon. Good luck on your search and enjoy!

  4. Frances! When did you guys go to Mahogany 3? =) I work for DMCI Homes! I manage the people who turnover the units in all our projects =)I could've gone with you three and toured you! =)

  5. This is soooo cool!! And I agree! A kid needs space to explore and to grow!

  6. Hi Frances. House hunting is so exciting but yes, location is also a prime consideration. We moved out of the ancestral house 8 years after we got married. It was my first time to move in all my 33 years. Our place is further up north and my daily commute (it's in Bagbga, I work in MOA) is taking a toll on my 4 month pregnancy (my 2nd). But we are happy to have a place of our own. I'm still dreaming of having a bigger kitchen though because our unit is very small (22 sqm.) but I loved how it was like not living in the city because of all the trees and space around the compound. Happy house hunting!

  7. We checked Mahogany too - another plus to consider: they're building a commercial center in the middle of all those Mahogany communities.

    I know what you mean about Ametta. I've seen the traffic going there too, from C5, turning off to Pasig - it can get pretty packed during regular rush hour!

  8. Hi, Frances! :) Been an avid reader but this is my first time to post a comment.

    We were in the same boat around 2 years ago. We finally found our place in Mahogany Place 3. Now, we are about to move in in 2 months time.

    Enjoy your house hunting. I'm sure it's going to be both fun and draining (sometimes lang naman). Goodluck! :)

  9. Fleur, we went last Saturday. Planning to go again in June to check out Ph. 1 and maybe 2, if papasukin kami. Can you tour me and my sister-in-law??? =)

  10. Thanks everybody! Yes, it's pretty exciting and kakapagod at the same time. Good times, good times!

  11. Very exciting! I've always wondered where Ametta is. We're the opposite though, right now we're in a town house with a park and pool for the kids but feel like moving into a flat and spending our soon to be saved money on a beach house.

  12. for us, we're buying a house and lot from my hubby's family. we have yet to sign the loan papers and when we do we'll be mortgaged up to our ears for 15 years :P it's true though, the property is not ours but for our kid.

    good luck with the hunt!!

  13. Rone, I really don't want to leave our condo!!! It's ours, eh. Like completely ours--no mortgages! And the views from our big glass windows? I don't think I can part with them.

    Sigh. I'll take Vito to a park na lang every weekend. Park? What park? Hehe, or enroll him in a school with big wide sprawling grounds.

  14. Neva, diyan kami afraid: mortgage! Magpapakayaman na lang muna kami talaga. Or sasali kami ng Lotto. =)

    Good luck! I wanna see your new house!

  15. Hello :) I just stumbled across your blog and it's great. I love the sincerity of your writing. My husband and I have been thinking of getting a place too. So much easier to think of it than to deal with the technical stuff -- like actually paying for it.

  16. Oh thank you! =) Ya, hubby and I need to pause after the agent explained to us the terms. Debt for the rest of our lives!!! Stress!

  17. Neighbor, you look great! Good luck with the house-hunting and maybe someday we'll be village neighbors for real (in Manila, NY, or London??)!

  18. Ooh! How jet-set, I love it!

  19. Hi Frances! My husband & I were also looking for a bigger space. Although we love that we're smacked in the middle of everything (San Juan City) the space isn't big enough since we have a year old daughter and is planning on having another baby soon. We've been frequenting Mahogany Place (particularly 1 & 2) since we plan on building our own house. But like you said, everything is perfect except for the area wherein you have to pass in order to rach Acacia Estates. The service road to it is magulo as of now, and that the nearest schools would be in Makati. So now we're still struggling if we'd get a townhouse in San Juan na lang or elsewhere. Anyway, good luck with your house hunting! -@gojackietong

  20. Actually, Jackie, I hear that the place has the biggest mosquitoes at night. We want to go back again, pero gabi naman, just to see if the rumor is true. Scary naman, diba? Ma-dengue pa kami =(

  21. You should definitely consider a lot of things in choosing your place to stay. The quality of the house should be the first thing to consider.

    virtual office makati

  22. Hi! You may want to check Megaworld's projects. They have low rise condos (3 to 4 floors only) in Mckinley Hill and Fort. You can contact my husband if you're interested and would like to check out the area. His email add is and cellphone number is 0917 817 0777

    You may also reply to my post. I always read naman you blogs :)

    Thanks and more power and success to you!


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