Where do Filipinos sleep?

A photo essay on how the bedroom is more than just a place to sleep.


The bedroom is a private space, a sanctuary for rest and recreation. From birth until death, the bedroom hosts some of life’s grandest events, the most common yet intimate of which is sleeping.

We dream when we sleep. Dreams tread both fantasy and reality, intriguing us with their meanings. They are escape and entrapment, light and dark. Our past experiences color our dreams, but we also think dreams could tell us the future.

We believe that decoding them would reveal hidden truths about ourselves.

This photo essay shows the bedrooms of Filipinos who come from different backgrounds, narrating personal stories about their rooms. Each portrait in this series offers an interesting look at how our waking lives can influence our dreams and vice-versa.

We are reminded that although sleep is a universal experience, it varies greatly from person to person.

More than anything, we are reminded that sleep—and dreaming—is not just a basic human function. It is a social privilege.


Photo by Kim Pauig.

Security guard

“Anong huling panaginip ang naaalala mo?”

“Nung gabing yun, may niresponde kaming nakawan. Tapos napanaginipan ko na nahuli namin yung magnanakaw at pinagtatataga ng mga tambay.”


“What’s the last dream that you remember?”

“That night, we responded to a burglary. I dreamed that we caught the burglars and that they were attacked by the neighborhood bums.”



Photo by Gabriel la Ó.


“Which item in your bedroom holds the most significance for you?”

I would say my travel books. I could always draw inspiration from any of my books. Since I cannot travel as much as I would want to because of my work schedule, I only need to open one of them.”



Photo by Kim Pauig.


“Anong una mong naiisip pagkagising mo?”

“Sana maraming customer.”

“Anong lagi mong napapanaginipan?”

“Lagi akong nakatayo sa lumang bahay, parang panahon pa ng Espanyol.”

“Anong ginagawa mo?”

“Nakatayo lang at tinititigan yung bahay.”


“What’s the first thing that you think of when you wake up?

“I hope we have many customers.”

“What do you always dream of?”

“That I’m standing inside an old house from the Spanish era.”

“What are you doing there?”

“Just standing and looking at the house.”



Photo by Pacifiqa Staff.


“Tell me about a dream you cannot forget.”

“I was making out with Eminem.”

“Best memories made in your bedroom?”

“I’ve shared the room with my younger sister since we were born. We grew up in the room and exchanged numerous secrets and stories within its walls.”



Photo by Kim Pauig.


“Anong panaginip mo kagabi?”

“Hinahabol ako ng crush ko.”

“Anong hitsura ng crush mo?”



“What did you dream of last night?”

“My crush was chasing me.”

“What does your crush look like?”




Photo by Kim Pauig.


“Anong pinaka-naaalala mong panaginip?”

“Nagbibilang ako ng pera na may iba’t ibang currency.”


“What dream do you remember most?”

“I’m counting money in different currencies.”



Photo by Kim Pauig.

Sex worker

“Anong huli mong panaginip na naaalala mo?”

“Patayan. Ang daming nagpapatayan.”

“Anong nangyari?”

“Ang dilim, e. Tapos ginising na ako ng nanay ko kaya ‘di ko na alam ang nangyari.”


“What’s the last dream you can remember?”

“Killing. Lots of people killing each other.”

“What happened?”

“It was dark. My mother woke me up so I never found out.”



Photo by Kim Pauig.

Street Child

“Anong paborito mong panaginip?”

“Yakap-yakap ko mga magulang ko.”


“What’s your favorite dream?”

“I’m embracing my parents.”



Photo by Kim Pauig.

Construction worker

“Anong hindi mo makalilimutang panaginip?”

“Nagko-kombulsyon ako noon galing sa trabaho. Natulog ako at napaniginipan ko si Kamatayan na kinukuha ako. Sabi ko sa kanya, wag naman kasi gusto mo bang mapabilang ang mga anak ko sa mga batang nasa lansangan?”


“What dream can you never forget?”

“I was having fever seizures. I slept and dreamed of Death beckoning me. I told him no, do you want my children to live in the streets?”



Photo by Pacifiqa Staff.

Marketing for a cosmetic company

“What’s the most important thing in your bedroom?”

“My travel memorabilia. The travel postcards I collect provide me a quick escape from the city.”


Photo by Kim Pauig.


“Anong lagi mong napapanaginipan?”

“Lumalangoy ako sa dagat. Langoy lang nang langoy parang hindi natatapos.”


“What do you always dream of?”

“I’m swimming in the sea. Swimming and swimming as if there is no end to it.”



Photo by Pacifiqa Staff.

Bloggers and twins

“Tell me about a dream you cannot forget.”

Stacy: “I forget my dreams. I used to give so much meaning to them, but now that I’m a Christian, I don’t even try recalling my dreams after waking up. It’s just that I don’t want my dreams’ interpretations to tell me where I am, or direct me spiritually or emotionally.”

“What is the oldest thing in your bedroom? What is its history?”

“The bedroom itself! It was built in the late 80s. My grandma, being a single mom, had to work her ass off and sell her jewelry to have this house built from scratch. She had to supervise everything that went on in the building of this house. She wanted it sturdy, so that her four kids would live in a safe environment.”



Photo by Pacifiqa Staff.


“I have a small painting given to me by my grandmother. Whenever I travel, I bring it along with me. It’s a way of keeping me connected to her and my way of bringing a piece of home wherever I go.”