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When hardly anybody dared break the black-and-white dress code

/ 06:55 AM September 08, 2017

The bride in her Michael Cinco gown on the grand staircase of Palais Garnier

The elaborate invite said to come in black and white, and impressively, the guests did, including the babies.

That feat of Filipino style decorum (we ignore dress codes the way we ignore traffic lights) was the sidelight to the Hayden Kho-Vicki Belo wedding in Paris last Sept. 2—the wedding of the year, arguably.

Whether done on purpose or not, the black-and-white dress code made the bride stand out in her blush pink Michael Cinco wedding ball gown. (See related story.)


The Christian rites were held at the American Church in Paris, its austere architecture and monastic simplicity a beautiful contrast to the bride’s feminine fashion.

The reception that followed the 5 p.m. rites was held at Palais Garnier (more popularly known to tourists as the Paris Opera House), the Paris landmark built in 1861, an amalgamation of architectures through the centuries, from Baroque to Beaux-Arts to the Second Empire. (See “Hayden, Vicki marry in emotion-filled rites,” Inquirer Lifestyle, 09/04/17.)

Bianca Yuson and Quark Henares

Drop-dead glam

The grand venue, which was kept secret until the wedding day itself, called for drop-dead-glam long dresses and black tie. The women came in either full black, white, or black and white.

The rich architecture—from the sweeping stairway to the frescoed ceilings, gilded halls—was a perfect backdrop to the equally rich long dresses or ball gowns with sweeping hemlines.

The “It Girls” Isabelle Daza Semblat, Georgina Wilson Burnand, and Jessica Wilson made a tableau in their all-white ball gowns and column (in the case of Jessica). At the ornate reception hall, Lovi Poe, in a dramatic black ball gown, completed the tableau that seemed straight out of a Charles James fashion spread.

Lucy Torres Gomez, as expected, was radiant in a white Randy Ortiz, and so was daughter Juliana. HK style icon Bonnae Gokson was also in white.

Apart from these fashion-forward women, most of the ladies were in dramatic black.


There were a few blinding eye-poppers: Gokson’s multistone neckpiece, Alice Eduardo’s diamond necklace, Small Laude’s gold necklace that ran down to her waist, and Babette Aquino Benoit’s huge diamond studs were those we remember.

At the reception, the bride changed into an understated Monique Lhuillier. From the church to the reception, the groom was in a Tom Ford white tux.

We don’t remember seeing any fashion victim; if there was, he/she wasn’t memorable. —THELMA S. SAN JUAN

Dr.Hayden Kho Sr. and wife Irene

Lovi Poe in dramatic black joins Georgina, Isabelle and Jessica at their table. —THELMA SIOSON SANJUAN

Gigi Lara, Alden Richards with the newlyweds

Richard and Lucy Gomez with daughter Juliana —PHOTO FROM RICHARD GOMEZ’S INSTAGRAM

Piolo Pascual and Tessa Valdes

Small Laude and Bonnae Gokson in statement necklaces

Matron of honor Karen Cancio-Litre and husband Patrick

Justin Pitt and wife Cristalle amid the splendor of Palais Garnier

Georgina Wilson Burnand, Isabelle Daza Semblat and Jessica Wilson

Lolit Solis and Ruby Coyiuto

Hayden Kho’s longtime friends led by Alaine Cheng (in white)—PHOTOS BY THELMA SIOSON SANJUAN

Cancio brothers Tony, Mark, Jerry with Atom Henares (far right)

Marissa Concepcion and Barbie Pardo Tiangco

Dr. Glenn Carandang, Maricris Zobel and Nicole Ortega

Melba Solidum,Marjorie Barretto,MargieMoran-Floirendo, Alice Eduardo, Carol Garcia, Small Laude

Jodi Santamaria

Andrew Gan and Jonathan Matti

Melissa Lopez and hubby Joel Journe

Steven Tan, Dr. Rex Gloria, Babette Benoit, Mario Katigbak, Margie Moran-Floirendo

Menchu Katigbak and Dr. Ravi Zacharias

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TAGS: black-and-white dress code, Hayden Kho-Vicki Belo wedding in Paris, Michael Cinco wedding ball gown
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