Ultimate Makeover

From Tambakan to Tambayan: This Family Spent P120K to Renovate Their Roofdeck

To make the most of the space they have, the owners created a chill spot complete with a playground area and a mini movie theater

Photography: courtesy of Hervia Joy Millares

With many families stuck at home for almost two years now, parents have been creative in bringing the outdoors into their living spaces. Some built DIY swimming pools, some indoor playgrounds, while one mom turned their backyard into a glamping site.

For couple Hervia Joy Millares and Ar Mario Millares, the stay-at-home rule got them working on a renovation project to turn their roof deck, which used to be a storage space, into a cozy outdoor entertainment space for the whole family.

READ: After 23 years, This Family Was Finally Able to Renovate Their Home

Millares' family's roof deck used to be bare and was utilized as a storage space. PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares

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"We used it (roofdeck) as our storage before. Then the pandemic happened. Ilang months ang lockdown at hindi pwede lumabas, especially mga kids, so naisip ni Mario na gawin hangout place," shared mommy Hervia in an interview.

Mario, who happens to be an architect and contractor, made it his mission to turn the tambakan area into a cozy tambayan for their three kids.

READ: This Couple Gave an Amazing Makeover to Their 36-Year-Old Rental Apartment

Hervia says they went for a "relaxing and garden ambiance for the overall theme." This way, the family can still experience the outdoors without stepping outside their house.

Mommy Hervia says the gazebo is her family's favorite spot to hang out and relax. They also gather here for meals. PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares


Since it was Mario, who worked on the renovation project, the space transformed into exactly what he and Hervia pictured it to be: a cozy hangout place where the whole family can gather, relax, and spend some quality time together.

Cost of roof deck renovation

Hervia admits giving their roof deck a facelift was no walk in the park. Like many, their livelihood was hit by the economic impact of the pandemic.

"It was a challenge for us financially working with this project as some of our projects were temporarily halted that time because of the pandemic," she sharedFortunately, they were able to save on some costs since Mario scored recycled and excess materials from his construction projects. Hervia says they ended up spending around Php120,000 for the renovation project.

READ: 5 Things That Can Increase Your Renovation Budget

Hervia said "70% ng materials na ginamit namin ay mga recycled and excess from his (Mario's) projects kaya minimal lang ang na-spend namin sa pagpagawa. Around Php120,000 in an area of 70sq.m kasama na ang mga additional materials and workers payroll."


Check out the rest of this gorgeous roof deck space:

Aside from common areas where family members can gather, the couple made sure it's a place where their kids,  Marione, 15; Miel, 6; and Mateo, 1, can have fun and enjoy. They allotted space for a playground area, an art section, and the gazebo also doubles as a mini-theater, perfect for movie nights!

"The playground's floor is artificial grass lined with rubber matting for safety and to achieve the garden theme," Hervia shared. PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares


In the morning, the family shares meals in the gazebo. It's al fresco dining at its finest! PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares

At night, the space can turn into a mini-movie theater. Imagine being with your loved ones under the starry sky and enjoying a movie together! PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares


Some nights are barbecue nights. PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares

"Our children love art, especially our eldest daughter. So we made a space na ma-express and ma-improve ang art skills nila," mommy Hervia shared. PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares


The newly-renovated roof deck also has a "multi-purpose" area along with a mini-kitchen. Hervia says it's now their go-to spot for holding special occasions.

Hervia tells us in the interview, "It's an area where we hold celebrations, mini gym, activities like dancing, playing, even airsoft target shooting. We've already celebrated four birthdays since it was finished last October 2021."

PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares


PHOTO BY Hervia Joy Millares

In the end, renovating their roof deck was more than just a home improvement prject for the Millares couple. It was a labor of love for their children.

Hervia shared, "It was priceless and tear jerking seeing our children's grateful smiles and excitement when the place was finally revealed to them. Especially when they saw the playground and the Art corner because they didn't know about it."



This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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