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Headshot

Exposed aggregate, I'll have to remember that. I've seen it in teh rougher form which is fine but I've also seen where the aggregate seems smoother though that may be from years of use. And i have seen the smoother variety where they have coated it with some sort of shiny finish that makes it always look wet. One pool I really like had that sort of shiny smooth exposed aggregate around it and before reaching the water edge it sloped down to about 4-5 inches below water level and leveled again. After another 2 feet, the aggregate stopped and the dropped into the pool. I really enjoyed sun bathing by laying in that shallow water on the edge. Even though I was laying on the aggregate, it felt good. Of course, a few years ago I was ordered to lay face down on a gravel road to pretend I was dead, and I feel asleep.

On the exposed aggregate, they don't just go with the aggregate that is normally in the concrete. They sprinkle the surface with pea-sized aggregate to completely cover the surface and then press it into the wet concrete. Then they spray the concrete with a chemical that makes it so the very top surface doesn't set and rinse it off using water after the concrete has set up. What you are left with is small round aggregate sticking up from the surface of the concrete. It can be coated to make it shiny. It is attractive, but I don't really like the feel under my feet. The effect you describe at the pool edge is called a beach edge.

 

I'll bet they were pissed to find out that their dead man was snoring. You must have been really tired to fall asleep in that position. Hahaha.

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Here are my specifications so far:

 

Central air conditioning to all rooms

 

Automatic water softener

 

Water purification system

 

Garage door with automatic garage door opener

 

Headshot ... That's an impressive list of specs you have there. I think most of it is doable, but I think you might have trouble with the items listed above:

 

 

Central air conditioning: As you already know, central air is pretty much reserved for commercial type buildings here in the PI. I guess you could run the ducting above the ceilings, but buying a good central air system here is going to be real expensive and very hard to find. Having the ducting made ain't going to be a walk in the park either. Personally, I think you might be much better off just using split units. These units are very quiet do to the fact that the compressors are outside. Here is a photo of a couple of my split units:

 

Exterior8-1.jpg

 

 

Automatic water softener: That may be another item that will be real hard to find here. These units are pretty big and really cannot be shipped here in a balikbayan box.

 

 

Garage door with automatic opener: Again another item that is made from "unobtainium" over here. The electric opener could be shipped here in a balikbayan box, but the garage door is another story. I don't have a clue where your going to get that. And if you find one comparable to what is readily available in the US, your going to pay through the nose for it.

 

 

Water purification system: This might be the easiest item on this list to find, but you will be going through filters pretty fast. We had one in a house we were renting before, but about all the thing did was remove dirt out of the water. We still bought bottled water to drink. I never trusted that thing to get rid of the bacteria in the water to the point that I was going to drink it.

 

 

Maybe you are like me and never liked the looks of a big ol' water dispenser sitting in the kitchen ... Well, take a look at the photo below. This is how I solved that problem. Works great, and cleans up the mess of the water cooler.:

 

Cabinet1.jpg

 

Cabinet2.jpg

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You stated that you wanted the tile layed 90 degrees to the walls. I think that is pretty much standard here. However, you might want to have 1 row of tile (closest to the wall) layed horizonal to the wall as a border. Here is what we did:

 

IMG_0002.jpg

 

 

Having hidden wires that lead up to a flat screen TV on the wall is easy to do. They can run a plastic conduit up the hollow block wall that will route the various RCA cables from the CD/DVD player, the cable TV box and amplifier, and then cover the plastic pipe with cement. Have an electrical plug directly behind the TV for power (no need to run an extension cord up the wall): Here is our TV hanging on the wall ... Look ma, no wires! smile.gif

 

IMG_0003.jpg

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smokey

they sell an automatic door opener for the garage here in cebu the cost was about 50.000 for door and motor installed

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You mentioned all exterior walls will be covered with colorized stucco ... I am not sure what you actually mean by "colorized stucco", but I have something I guess would be about the same on my house.

 

What they will normally do here in the PI when you want other than a smooth exterior wall ... After the hollow block is smoothed with cement, they then spray a thin mixture of cement on the exterior walls prior to painting. This gives the wall a nice rough texture. We used this texture on all the exterior walls and on both sides of the security fence in the backyard. However, we did not use it right up next to the windows.

 

Anyway, you can get an idea from this photo:

 

InteriorSurface.jpg

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loosehead

My central aircon here in Perth looks much the same as Turbota's split system. Compressor's outside, ducting in the ceiling. Surely these systems are available in Cebu. They are much more efficient that having 4 or more 1.5hp split systems. I think I recall Mike Morey having an aircon thread where he covered ducting in some detail.

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Steel-reinforced concrete slab floor construction (single pour)

 

 

Here is what you can expect with your concrete floor. Lots of rebar, but good luck with the "single pour" ... These guys will bring in cement in buckets.

 

Notice the heavy poly sheet layed between the ground and the rebar ... Keeps the ground moisture from wicking up into the concrete slab over time:

 

24.jpg

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fanboat

Steel-reinforced concrete slab floor construction (single pour)

 

 

Here is what you can expect with your concrete floor. Lots of rebar, but good luck with the "single pour" ... These guys will bring in cement in buckets.

 

Notice the heavy poly sheet layed between the ground and the rebar ... Keeps the ground moisture from wicking up into the concrete slab over time:

 

24.jpg

 

Never pour on plastic....needs 2" of sand on top of the plastic....or the water will come to the surface and spider crack the finish?

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I don't know about "spider cracks" in the finish, but none of the ceramic floor tiles in the house that were layed over the cement slab have any cracks in them.

 

 

You will find that the cement slab below floors that are to be covered with ceramic tile is finished rough (see photo below):

 

90.jpg

 

 

 

You will also find that the cement slab below floors that are to be covered with wood planks are finished smooth (no photo).

 

BTW .... They installed "Engineered" (hardwood veneer) wood planks in the bedrooms of my house. Between the cement slab and the wood planks was a thin layer of poly foam and then a layer of 10mm marine grade plywood which was screwed through the poly foam and into the cement slab to keep it secure ... Then the wood planks were glued on there back-side and machined stapled to in the plywood in the non-visable tongue and groove area:

 

Here is kinda how they did it:

 

 

112.jpg

 

113.jpg

 

114.jpg

 

115.jpg

 

.

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BTW ... If your interested in Engineered wood veneer plank flooring in maybe your bedrooms, here is the price sheet for what was installed in my house:

 

 

WoodFlooring-1.jpg

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To give you an idea .... Finished upper foyer area and bedroom floors with veneer wood planking:

 

 

UpstairsFoyer1-1.jpg

 

 

Bedroom3.jpg

 

MasterBedroom2.jpg

 

Bedroom2.jpg

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Headshot

Central air conditioning: As you already know, central air is pretty much reserved for commercial type buildings here in the PI. I guess you could run the ducting above the ceilings, but buying a good central air system here is going to be real expensive and very hard to find. Having the ducting made ain't going to be a walk in the park either. Personally, I think you might be much better off just using split units. These units are very quiet do to the fact that the compressors are outside. Here is a photo of a couple of my split units:

 

Automatic water softener: That may be another item that will be real hard to find here. These units are pretty big and really cannot be shipped here in a balikbayan box.

 

Garage door with automatic opener: Again another item that is made from "unobtainium" over here. The electric opener could be shipped here in a balikbayan box, but the garage door is another story. I don't have a clue where your going to get that. And if you find one comparable to what is readily available in the US, your going to pay through the nose for it.

 

Water purification system: This might be the easiest item on this list to find, but you will be going through filters pretty fast. We had one in a house we were renting before, but about all the thing did was remove dirt out of the water. We still bought bottled water to drink. I never trusted that thing to get rid of the bacteria in the water to the point that I was going to drink it.

Thanks for your comments. I guess I hadn't reviewed my spec list very well before I posted it, since I had already eliminated one of the items you mentioned. There won't be a garage door, since I decided that with a wall around the property, I don't really need walls (or a door) on the garage. Instead, it will have rails and ballusters in the arched openings on the sides and back and just open in the front.

 

I had a deep well back in Utah before I moved here, so I had a water purification system and water softener. The systems really aren't that big or complicated, and I found a few companies here that install home systems when I searched the Internet. How often the filter has to be changed depends on the type of filtration and on how much sediment is in the well water. I will have my deep well tested after it is drilled, and hopefully I will only need a simple filtration system. From what I have seen of the strata on this island, there shouldn't be much sediment if the well gets down int the rock layers.

 

If it turns out that a water softener is difficult to obtain, then I guess the maid will just have to work harder keeping hard water deposits from forming on the sinks, toilets, tubs and showers. Already, I don't like the way the hard water spots my glasses and silverware. Seems that nobody here is used to drying the dishes immediately after they are washed. They would rather just put them in a rack and let them drip dry. I don't like that.

 

I was planning to make all of the central air runs through the lower perimeter sections of the tray ceilings, but I will look into the split AC units like you are using as well as asking the architect if central air (with ducting) is an option. That is all good advice. Thanks.

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Headshot

You stated that you wanted the tile layed 90 degrees to the walls. I think that is pretty much standard here. However, you might want to have 1 row of tile (closest to the wall) layed horizonal to the wall as a border.

 

Having hidden wires that lead up to a flat screen TV on the wall is easy to do. They can run a plastic conduit up the hollow block wall that will route the various RCA cables from the CD/DVD player, the cable TV box and amplifier, and then cover the plastic pipe with cement. Have an electrical plug directly behind the TV for power (no need to run an extension cord up the wall

I said 45 degrees on the tile, but you understood what I meant, since your tile is laid on a 45-degree angle too. I have actually been thinking of laying out the tile in patterns (with borders and centerpieces) for each room if I have the budget to do so. I think I will offset the borders from the walls a bit with the filler tiles on either side of the border being on a 45-degree angle. But...that's still in the thought stage. I don't know what we will end up doing.

 

On the walls, I am leaning toward steel I-beam structural construction with formed steel framing for the interior and exterior walls. The exterior stucco and interior wall finishes will be attached to sheeting. I think the two biggest environmental threats on Cebu are typhoons and earthquakes. The more I see of the typical reinforced concrete/concrete block construction used here, the more doubtful I become that it will remain standing in an earthquake. The fact the earthquakes are a lot rarer than typhoons is why everybody builds just with typhoons in mind, but when a major tremor hits on one of the two major fault lines running down either side of Cebu (and it will), I think a lot of these houses will be coming down on the people inside. A steel-framed house can withstand both of the major environmental threats, the materials and construction know-how are readily available, and the house goes up a lot faster than concrete. It will be very easy to run the utilities through the walls that way too. As a bonus, it is just as impervious to termites as concrete is.

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Headshot

You mentioned all exterior walls will be covered with colorized stucco ... I am not sure what you actually mean by "colorized stucco", but I have something I guess would be about the same on my house.

 

What they will normally do here in the PI when you want other than a smooth exterior wall ... After the hollow block is smoothed with cement, they then spray a thin mixture of cement on the exterior walls prior to painting. This gives the wall a nice rough texture. We used this texture on all the exterior walls and on both sides of the security fence in the backyard. However, we did not use it right up next to the windows.

 

Anyway, you can get an idea from this photo:

 

InteriorSurface.jpg

Colorized stucco has dye incorporated right into the rough concrete that is applied. That way you don't ever have to paint and the color stays the same throughout the life of the building. Even if the wall wears, the material underneath has the same color, so you don't get get the peeling look you do with painted surfaces. It is available here. I have already checked.

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Here is what you can expect with your concrete floor. Lots of rebar, but good luck with the "single pour" ... These guys will bring in cement in buckets.

OK. I see that in addition to specifying a single pour, I will need to make sure the pour is made using concrete trucks and not mixed on-site. Otherwise, there is no way I will ever get a single pour. From my point of view, a single pour floor will last a lot longer and will be a lot more level than a floor that is poured a little at a time. My contractor will understand that is what I expect long before we get started with the project. He will have to make sure the concrete trucks are available for the pour.

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