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East Raya Gardens | January 6, 2012
Architect-builder, entrepreneur and department store operations manager Angeli Valenzuela never fails to impress guests to his fine abode at the Palm Grove in Better Living Subdivision, Parañaque City. A sense of serenity always greets visitors to the exclusive community developed by DMCI Homes in 2003. Even the playful noise of children enjoying the swimming pool at the clubhouse seems confined and fair.
Stepping into Angeli’s unit in one of Palm Grove’s seven mid-rise buildings then brings out the best of his hospitality. The modern Asian-inspired interior design enhances the pleasant atmosphere fit for friendly gatherings. A table in the balcony decorated with Boston fern, foxtail, lantana and a potted palm tree is a home-away-from-home venue for al fresco dining featuring his personally-perfected spaghetti al tonno and light-as-air cheesecake he served when we visited.
More than realizing his passion for pleasing guests with his fine recipes, the flat impresses Angeli himself the most. It has been six years since the architect moved into his first property investment, but the unit remained as good as when it was turned over to him.
Angeli fondly remembers the banner ad along Sucat Road that led him to take a peek at the Palm Grove. He was after a P1.3 million inner unit three doors from the corner of his present unit when the latter ‘beckoned” him. The connection was immediate and the rest was history.
Angeli tells several reasons why he decided to acquire the unit right then and there.
“At the time, I already decided I will buy it even if suddenly it was beyond my budget, because of the bigger space and the balcony,” Angeli recalls, referring to the P2.4 million tag price of the unit. “The size is just right, not too cramped.”
His unit has a floor area of 55 square meters plus a 10-square-meter utility area at the rooftop for laundry.
Growing up in Parañaque, Angeli still wanted to live in his home city and be close to his folks.
He trusts the developer, DMCI Homes, because of its track record. For a company building something like the Skyway, he believes that the Palm Grove property was built with quality and stability in mind.
Angeli loves the layout of his unit. “The bedroom doors are tucked in one corner so that they are hidden and guests don’t immediately get to see the inside of the master’s bedroom. There is privacy, unlike in other condo units, where from the living area or kitchen, bedroom interiors are for everyone to see.”
As an architect, he adds that the layout and details are well-studied – from the location of electrical outlets to the orientation of door openings, even the provision of embedded drain pipes for window-type air-conditioners. “I think it’s a working formula; beautiful and exact, very functional.”
Angeli has two other properties from different developers but he prefers to live at his Palm Grove unit. “I’m happy here because when I came here, my unit was quite ready for dwelling with all the partitions, kitchen cabinets and even insect screens already in place, unlike the others” he says.
“Here in this house, since it was turned over, I did not have any problem with the quality of construction, no nothing,” Angeli says. “That is why this is my standard, my gold bar when it comes to properties. And now that I have tried others, the next time I buy another property, I’ll go for DMCI Homes.”
Parking is convenient at Palm Grove because the community is low density. There is a separate parking area for visitors.
Residents can enjoy amenities such as the swimming pool and the KTV room. The Property Management Office staffs are very professional, courteous and helpful in addressing residents’ concerns.
“Because of my lifestyle, career and business, this kind of living and home is really more appropriate for me. It’s far easier to maintain; it’s just like I’m in a hotel,” says Angeli of Palm Grove. “I am very busy and I live alone. I go to work Monday to Friday; I leave at 8 and I go home at 9. On weekends, I am at the jobsite or attending to my other businesses.” He adds, “I’m only 30 minutes away from my office in Libis, Quezon City.”
Overall, the Palm Grove is still very well-maintained preserving its original newness. One friend who visited Angeli again after so many years can attest to this. Quoting the amazed guest, a designer-painter who Angeli commissions for his paintings, Angeli says, “I’m so surprised. This place still looks the same as the very first time when I went here – impressive.”
Indeed, Palm Grove is home sweet home for Arch. Angeli Valenzuela. “This particular unit and the clean and serene environment that Palm Grove maintains have endeared this house to me and keep on doing so. A friend once told me that this going to be just my first home. Well, now I have to disagree - this is going to be my one and only home,” Angeli says.
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