Everyone wants to be in love and, more importantly, to stay in love! After celebrating two decades of Valentine’s Day as a couple, my hubby Dennis and I have evolved into a romantic pair minus date nights.
In fact, our Valentine’s date this year will be at the Speedo annual fashion show at the new wing of the Glorietta Mall this Feb. 18, where I have convinced him to join me on the ramp. Speedo will have its all-performing suits as well as bright and colorful contour swimsuits for the ladies.
With all our children and social activities, we find couple time whenever possible, but sweet Dennis still remembers to give me roses on Valentine’s Day. Our 20th wedding anniversary will be this June, and we plan to have a renewal of our vows, complete with dogs and hamsters.
Another loving pair who recently celebrated 20 years of marriage filled with love, strength and success is Fila’s power couple Butch and Cris Albert. A chic and cozy gathering was held at their favorite dining place and namesake, the Prince Albert Rotisserie at the InterContinental Manila.
In complete attendance were the Albert family with children Carlo and Isabela, other Alberts including BJ, Marty and MJ, Carlo and Monique Lopez, and Raffy and Rina Llamas, Ana Abad Santos with son Tommy Bitong, and the ever-gorgeous Wanda Louwallien. The Carlos P. Romulo room at the Prince Albert Rotisserie was festooned with flowers, thanks to Robert Blancaflor.
Cris Albert greeted guests in her fairytale-inspired, black Rajo Laurel gown. Dinner was a gastronomic performance, starring the restaurant’s famous Roast US Angus Prime Rib, paired with Lobster Bisque. Champagne overflowed all evening, as it did again a few weeks later at the Fila Polo Cup 2014 at the Manila Polo Club.
The Fila Polo Cup 2014 was a Gatsby-theme, champagne-flavored celebration at the opening of the year’s polo season. The members and guests at the Manila Polo Club were amazed to see the polo field transformed into a fabulous Roaring ’20s, Charleston scene, replete with vintage cars, pearls and flapper dresses.
Cris, president of Fila Philippines, cheered hubby Butch’s polo team forward, as the guests learned the mechanics of the game, including the Low Goals and High Goals.
Renowned fashion and events director Robby Carmona took charge of the dramatic party program that had a Fila fashion show, cocktail party and fireworks in perfect sequencing. Event stylist Robert Blancaflor did an excellent job in the production design with his signature, exquisite flower arrangements.
Among the guests were familiar Fila faces Tim Yap and Fabio Ide, joined by new brand endorsers, Filipino-Swiss beauty Jess Kienle and emerging star Wesley Machado. For the Great Gatsby look, amazing designer Albert Andrada made me a stunning, white floral, flapper dress. Albert is all smiles these days because Paris Hilton wore one of his creations to a red carpet event in Hollywood.
Being a keen polo player, Butch fiercely went for the win in Sunday’s Game 1 along with nephew and youngest polo player Tommy Bitong. Their other team members were Santi Elizalde and Jay de Jesus. Game 2 had the team of Iñigo Zobel, Juan Jauretche, Alfie Araneta and Cole Aguirre going for gold with polo patron Iñigo scoring the winning goal.
Just as in its past editions, this year’s Fila Polo Cup was a veritable magnet for the top personalities of the season. Celebrities, media personalities, and movers and shakers from the top echelons of business and society were in full attendance.
The Gatsby-esque ’20s was also all about onstage entertainment, and Fila’s take on it was nothing short of lush and lavish, with multifaceted performer Myra David lending a touch of jazz to the evening, along with R&B, hip-hop and reggae artist Artstrong. Myra, also known by her stage name Skarlet, remains one of the Philippines’ most loved entertainers.
The event also showcased the brand-new Fila collection. The direction for 2014 is definitely retro, or in the words of Fila advertising VP Ana Abad Santos, the new designs are “going back to Fila’s roots.”
Ringing in the new year
Vintage and retro are the order of the day it seems, as The Peninsula Manila also had the Gatsby theme for its New Year’s Eve party. Crystals and baubles, champagne and fairy lights, sumptuous buffets and balloons filled The Lobby, as the premier hotel counted down the seconds to the New Year for the 20th straight year. The Pen’s New Year’s Eve Ball is still the hottest party in town.
Guests started the evening with a decadent array of culinary treats created by executive chef Richard Green, then proceeded to party the night away on the dance floor. At the stroke of midnight, The Lobby became a sea of festivity as a tidal wave of balloons and shiny confetti fired from canons washed over guests as they enjoyed party favors and champagne. It was a night people will remember for the rest of their lives.
Let me end with a Year of the Horse birthday wish for PR maven Sunny Ku. This year will surely be lucky for all the brands that bank on his marketing skills. I am glad to be part of his fun events like the upcoming Tumi Spring/Summer Collection launch. The launch will be at 71 Gramercy where most of the hippest events are happening these days.
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