How do 21 years of love and happiness go by so quickly? Mixed in with four wonderful children, countless travel adventures and amazing family holidays, our blissful two scores and a year of wedded life have been showered with blessings and more blessings.
Last year we took four months to plan our 20th anniversary, which we gave its own hashtag, #DandTLove20. This year, we did it all in four days. #DandTLove20and1 doesn’t quite have the hashtag effect as its predecessor, but it was all good as we celebrated with a smashing party at the Swatch & Swatch Building at 918 Arnaiz Ave., Makati City.
Just last weekend, Swatch grand dame Virgie Ramos told me about the coming exhibit of historic race cars that the Manila Sports Car Club (MSCC) would be mounting in line with the unveiling of the new Swatch Gran Turismo Collection.
Finding a party theme among the vintage cars and a venue to celebrate our milestone, I asked Tita Virgie if we could hold a ’50s-theme event where we would also view our 20th wedding anniversary videos, which were wonderfully made by Marty Ilagan and Emir Bautista.
And so, two days before the special exhibit of Swatch Gran Turismo, we partied to the rock ‘n’ roll music of the Hot Flashes Band while the men marveled at the vintage cars on the ground floor of the Swatch & Swatch Building.
My Assumption BFF Popsie Gamboa quickly worked her magic and got the second floor of the building transformed into a ’50s-looking diner complete with jukebox and retro posters. Added to the décor were the delicious theme cupcakes by Marita Laddaran of Hearts & Bells (tel. 2430599), a popcorn machine and colorful ping-pong table.
The Shakey’s on Wheels bus was parked outside for classic cheese pizza and chicken orders. For drinks we had Nederburg wines, Remy Martin Club Cognac, Casa Noble Ultra Premium Tequila and Piper Heidseck Champagne, thanks to good friend Sunny Ku.
Before viewing the videos in the newly opened Swatch Theater, Dennis and I chose the best-dressed guests and awarded them the latest Swatch collection. We also had a limbo rock contest for all the guests to try to cross the giant Swatch watch without falling.
With minimal preparation, the fun party was a blast with everyone dancing the night away. When all the guests had gone home, Tita Virgie and I relaxed and admired the impressive vintage cars at the lobby. We were quite amazed at how everything fell wonderfully into place.
Open to the public 11 a.m.-7 p.m., the Gran Turismo exhibit of the historic race cars is on view until July 5. A display of “Automobilias” and circuit races videos are the added attractions on the ground floor. There will be a film showing daily of “Racing Legends” by Martin Galan starting tomorrow.
A classic Triumph car welcomes all visitors. A nonprofit organization, MSCC is dedicated to the preservation and enjoyment of sports cars. Although the club focused originally on vintage sports cars, MSCC’s roster now includes a wide variety of modern two-seaters. Its events cover vintage races and the prestigious Westin Philippine Plaza Concours d’Elegance.
Mainly influenced by motor racing and elements of this sport, the new Swatch Gran Turismo Collection has a mix of classic details with more contemporary, minimalist designs. Incorporating an automotive slant, speedometer or wheel-spoke motifs are integrated into the dials of these cool watches.
Explaining the link between the cars and the timepieces, Carlo Giordanetti, creative director of Swatch, says the relationship lies in three magic words: precision, reliability and beauty. Interestingly, Giordanetti lists actor Steve McQueen as one of his heroes.
Dennis had a difficult time choosing between the Destination Paris chronograph with a burgundy strap and the Double Depth with a rich leather strap. Each had a classic dandy elegance in a sporty timepiece of the brand’s new racetrack-inspired Gran Turismo Collection.
That evening, I decided to wear my Swatch from the BenCab Collection. Its colors matched my ’50s dress that fave designer Rajo Laurel made for me in two days.
Freeway X BenCab
I also used the same Swatch at the Freeway X BenCab affair at the CCP two weeks ago.
Freeway, one of the most innovative fashion brands, presented its latest National Artist Collectors’ Series through which creative works are immortalized in a beautiful fashion collection.
Freeway is honored to pay tribute to Benedicto Cabrera, one of the best known and most respected artists in the Philippines.
The fashion show, part of BenCab’s celebration for his 50th Anniversary Retrospective, was a splendid night of art, fashion and a grand presentation of Filipino talent. It opened with cocktails and a Pop-Up Shop Preview at the CCP main lobby showcasing Freeway x BenCab National Artist Collectors’ Series. As guests viewed the collection on display, they were treated to hors d’oeuvres. BenCab and devoted partner Annie Sarthou were there to chat and welcome everyone.
As the lights dimmed, the guests were treated to a dramatic fashion show by Freeway, where the vibrant 50-piece collection featured the many variations of BenCab’s popular subject “Sabel.”
BenCab’s artworks were translated into sublimation graphic tees, work shirts, tailored dresses, casual tops, weekend wear and many other accessories.
The fashion show was made possible by Freeway’s event sponsor, the online site Zalora, which helped produce the show.
Bag design winners
Winners of the recently held Art Bag Design Contest were also recognized at the event. BenCab awarded them for their winning designs. “Taong Putik Festival” by Merry Joyce Bautista and “Ating Pilipinas” by Mark Dizon are now available in Freeway Stores nationwide.
After the main events at the CCP lobby, guests were invited to the opening of “BenCab in Multiples: A Print Retrospective” at the Bulwagang Juan Luna (main gallery) on the third floor of CCP.
They all marveled at the huge collection of BenCab’s prints from CCP’s collection, a few private collectors and his own personal collection.