Augusto Go is one of the nicest people we know and one of the kindest as well. His family has been prominent in Cebu for over a century, following a trajectory that would limn a saga of accomplishments.
Fifty years ago Augusto founded the Cebu Central Colleges when he was barely 29 years of age. It has metamorphosed into the University of Cebu of which he is president. It has 48,000 students spread through four campuses all over Metro Cebu. Its record of topnotchers is hard to beat.
Aside from that, Augusto has varied business and civic concerns. He serves as the honorary consul general of Korea. Cebu has one of the largest communities of Koreans in the Philippines.
Augusto has just turned 79, an occasion celebrated as his 80th year, with a grand dinner party at the ballroom of the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel. For months previous to Oct. 11, he had been telling friends to reserve the date for him. Everyone knew why, of course.
On the appointed day, they came, almost 900 well-wishers come to sing Happy Birthday, and pour wishes for many happy returns of the day. He was radiant greeting one and all, a glint of mischief in his eye as he welcomed family, friends, associates and a horde more.
The celebration had been planned to the last infinite detail by his beautiful wife Elizabeth Gan Go and their daughter Candice Gotianuy, chancellor of the University of Cebu and honorary consul of Norway.
The invitations requested formal attire with a dash of red, and most everyone complied. Elizabeth was a vision of elegance in red, with a blaze of diamonds and fiery rubies on her neck. Candice also wore a red flowing gown.
They both went from table to table, making sure everyone was at ease and served the exquisite plated dinner which in itself was quite a feat of precision, and with optimum results. The soup was warm, the salad crisp, the prawns luscious, and the tenderloin steak deliciously juicy.
The night wore on with songs, dances, speeches and general fun. To Augusto, Elizabeth and Candice, our best wishes for their continued success in all their endeavors.
Qube Gallery exhibit
Qube Gallery at the Henry Hotel in Banilad scored quite a hit with its latest exhibit, “Cruses.” It featured sculpted crosses in wood and mother of pearl, as well as wall-bound sculptures of the same materials by master jeweler Hans Brumann. He was present, with his lovely wife Maria.
Maris Holopainen, the gallery’s owner, welcomed them and an elegant crowd of first-nighters come to view and obtain some of the artworks. Two of the crosses were put up for silent auction.
Proceeds were destined for the Mandaue Children’s Choir which was present to serenade the guests with an eclectic repertoire. The choir has been the recipient of various awards at international competitions.
The occasion also served to introduce craft beer made locally by the Cebu Brewing Co.
At Tinder Box
Marie Helene Navarro and her daughter Aziza Mondoñedo hosted a gourmet dinner at the Tinder Box to launch its new dining salon, all painted white and accessible through a white and glass stairway.
For that matter, the whole Tinder Box deli shop has also been refurbished. It has taken some time, but the results are well worth the long wait.
Guests included lawyer Lorna Kapunan, Joan Largo, Alex Medalla, Sonia Castillo, Irene Garcia, Marissa Fernan, Elvira Luym, Kenneth Cobonpue, Teresin Mendezona, Honey Loop, Nelia Neri, Nestor Alonso and Aissa de la Cruz.
Chef Marleen Ong prepared an elaborate degustation menu that started with a cone of tuna tartare, and a white “gazpacho,” made with Kirby cucumbers and Sultana grapes. Then came roasted foie gras, a caviar flan and seared sea bass.
A ginger mojito granita served as sorbet, the perfect prelude to the main entrée’s beef tenderloin with Choron sauce.
Dessert was a riot: Belgian chocolate mousse, chocolates crisps, cocoa crumbs, meringue kisses and banana sherbet. There was still more—almond vanilla sponge, dry caramel, Italian coffee ice cream and glass tuile.