EXCLUSIVE: Inside Happy Ongpauco-Tiu’s Home
Happy Ongpauco-Tiu opens her home for the first time to Metro Channel, and we got to see a brand new side to the hostess and restaurateur
We’ve always known Happy Ongpauco-Tiu as the master entertainer—culinary mastermind behind specialty restaurants like Pamana, Tsokolateria, and Le Chon; and entertaining specialist behind Private Dining by Happy Concept Group.
But this time, she is opening not just her restaurants, not just her private entertaining home, but her family’s personal home to Metro Channel’s Metro Moms to give us a glimpse of who Happy, the mom, is.
We’ve seen Happy’s penchant for themes and exotic details when we visited her private entertaining sanctuary on Metro Home. It was a symphony of colors and textures that reflect Happy’s own quirkiness and sense of style.
This time, however, we see a tamer side to Happy as we step inside the Tiu family’s home.
The entertainment area—which is the living room and the lanai—is predominantly wood, brought to life by the details and décor that fill the coffee and side tables. It is in these details that Happy’s quirkiness and preference for eccentricity comes out—from the Buddha hand and golden statues to the ceramic balls and intricately designed china. These items are tokens from Happy’s many travels abroad, either with friends or with family. She says that she makes sure to buy one special item whenever she goes to a country to remind her of the good memories of that trip.
In the living room, there are huge sofas and seating areas. Happy says this was made intentional because even at home, they love to entertain. Since they have a big family and lots of friends, they would usually host some of their most personal and intimate gatherings in the house—thus, the need for ample seating space.
This love for entertaining is also the reason for the living room and lanai area connecting to the outdoor pool area. This indoor-outdoor connection enables the space to be extended when needed. Happy says she and her husband love nature that’s why they wanted the glass sliding doors to bring the outdoor feel inside.
The pool area is one of her kids’ favorite places in the house and is where they would swim and hold picnics. During our visit, Happy prepares a barbecue spread for her kids, as they frolic and take a dip in the pool.
The same wood and nature theme then continues to the room that Happy refers to as “the den;" she says this is one of her favorite rooms. It is where the family would chill and relax, hangout, and watch a movie.
Happy also gives an exclusive glimpse of their second floor, where the bedrooms are located. She gives us a tour of the kids’ room, which are designed after her sons’ love for superheroes.
The playroom is also an equally interesting space, as it houses beautiful paintings of her kids.
It is indeed extraordinary seeing Happy in her own, personal space with her kids for the first time, since we’re so used to seeing her as the chef or the boss, donning the restaurateur and hostess hat she is famous for. But she says that amongst all the roles that she has, being a mom is her favorite of all.
“When I got married and became a mom, my whole life changed. And I make sure that time with family is the most precious thing. I really try my best living each day enjoying with each one of them,” says Happy. She makes sure that when her children are at home, she is also there to be with them. And when they go to school or go to sleep, that’s the time she allots for work.
It may seem hard, especially with so much happening in her career, but for Happy, there really is no compromising when it comes to family. In fact, the quality time she spends with her children really shows because her love for entertaining food like cheese platters and grazing tables have definitely rubbed off on her kids!
“The greatest lesson I’ve learned about being a mom is being selfless. At the end of the day, when you’re a mother, you put yourself last in the equation. It’s always about your children, how you wanna protect them, how you wanna pour your love for them, and make sure they have a good future,” says Happy.
And indeed, she does look her happiest in the comforts of her own home, in the company of her beautiful family.
Take an exclusive tour of Happy Ongpauco-Tiu’s home and hear more about her thoughts on motherhood in her episode of Metro Moms, full episode available above. Catch fresh episodes of Metro Moms on Sundays on Metro Channel, channel 52 on Sky Cable and channel 174 on HD.