Teresita “Titang” Cuenco Gonzalez celebrated her 88th by flying down to Cebu from Manila and settling at the family-owned Plantation Bay resort in Marigondon, Lapu-Lapu City. One evening, she gathered a group of family and friends for a convivial dinner at the resort’s Palermo specialty restaurant.
She was looking splendid and spoke about a recent aptitude test she submitted herself to. “Out of 30 I had 28 correct answers,” she declared to the group of well-wishers who surrounded her.
With her was her son Manny Gonzalez who conceptualized Plantation Bay and made it a reality. That placid seawater lagoon surrounded by the resort’s facilities is one of a kind. And the greenery has grown more lush with the passing years. Tourists, local and international, come in droves.
The cuisine at Plantation Bay is also unique, and more so on this special evening of Titang’s birthday dinner. The lechon had been flavored with coconut water, and the seafood paella was perfectly moist and fluffy. Everything else was just as delicious.
Desserts were truffles, butterscotch squares and marzipan. Fine wines were poured, and for the toasts there was chilled champagne with the Veuve Clicquot label.
Former Rep. Tony Cuenco, who came with his wife Nancy (nee Roa), was asked to toast his dear aunt and he did so in poetic Cebuano which earned him great applause. Cecilia Rodriguez did her toast in Spanish, praising Titang as the perfect lady.
Among those present were the celebrator’s nieces Chickie Reyes Feraren and Ana Maria Manguerra, who had come from Manila, Father Bonaventura who had earlier said the birthday Mass, Ching Kalug and Hannibal Boiser.
Aeropostale in Cebu
The Gallery at the ground floor of Ayala Center was packed with VIPs the night Stores Specialties Inc. (SSI) opened the Aeropostale shop in Cebu. It was all the more festive as the store is adjacent to the Gallery.
Aeropostale caters to teenagers but you’ll be surprised by the large number of those above 21 who patronize the place. The event was dubbed Aero-Jam, a fashion-meets-music occasion with a DJ that set the mood with a blare of pulsating beats, to quote Bigseed’s Jaja Rama and Vanessa Deen, who were in charge of the bash.
SSI executive vice president Anton Huang was in the midst of it all, greeting the many friends he has made in Cebu with so many SSI openings of various fashion stores, all located at the Ayala Center.
Malu Francisco, SSI’s marketing communications manager, was there as was Lindsay Madrid, Aeropostale merchandising manager. The Ayala Center team of Bong Dy and Clavel Tongco included Jia Sadol, Janra Montills and Edel Hao.
Best of all, there were 20 youngsters modeling the Aeropostale collection, drawing cheers, applause and all manner of encouragement from parents, grandparents, siblings and throngs of relatives.
These were not regular models but young achievers in school and multifarious fields of endeavor. Jaja and Vanessa have kindly supplied us with a list and their family connections. Kudos to all:
Sports and fitness enthusiast Alyssa Sacal; architecture student, scuba diver and ballerina Arissa Onozawa, daughter of Joy Martinez Onozawa; soccer player, budding artist and model Gabo Darza, daughter of Kathy Woolbright and Chris Darza, and granddaughter of Marguerite Lhuillier.
International School activities conference MVP and academic achiever Illeana Osmeña, daughter of Mimo and Lana Osmeña, granddaughter of Lito and Anette Osmeña; No. 4 ranked tennis player in the Philippines (Girls 16-under category Jana Pages, daughter of John Pages.
Jet skiing beachcomber Katalin Ugarte, daughter of Marcelino and Melissa Ugarte, and granddaughter of Evelyn Graham Ugarte.
Chemist and corporate executive Nicole Li.
Miss Cesafi 2013, soccer mid-fielder and student council secretary Nikki Tilka.
Varsity soccer team captain and volleyball player Phoebe Smith, daughter of Tippi and Tony Smith.
Basketball forward, soccer goalkeeper and Yellow Boat Hope volunteer Reona Ido, daughter of Anna Hyatt.
Basketball and volleyball varsity team player and aid volunteer Alex Osmeña, son of Mimo and Lana Osmeña.
Multi-awarded Autocross racer and sports enthusiast David Lim, son of David G. Lim.
Basketball and soccer varsity player and “Well-rounded student awardee” James Lotzof, son of Jackie and Roy Lotzof.
Cebu’s four-time Karter of the Year and Macau Grand Prix Asian Karting Open champion Jette Calderon.
Basketball player, karter and model JT Gullas, son of Johnvic and Tricia Gullas.
Student council president, accomplished debater and budding artist Julian Cobonpue, son of Kenneth and Susanne Cobonpue.
Architecture student Kenzo Cañizares, son of Jose Maria and Marilou Cañizares.
School leader, entrepreneur and altruist Marcko Durano, son of Boloy Durano and Virginia Romoff Durano.
Multi-awarded Cebu debate captain, Philippine Debate Team member and football player Mikkel Neri, son of Jay-Jay and Lot-Lot Neri, and grandson of Julius and Nelia Neri.
United Football League player Tom Booth, son of Bob and Temsin Booth, grandson of Josephine Aboitiz Booth.