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Alex Y. Vergara

Journey to I Do: A bridal show

Francis Libiran and Patricia Santos were the featured designers in “The Journey to I Do,” a recent bridal show organized and presented by Manila Bulletin’s Wedding Essentials (WE) Magazine and Conrad Manila. The day-long bridal showcase at the hotel’s Forbes ballroom also featured wedding suppliers such as leading jewelry brands like Bulgari and Jewelmer, photographers, makeup artists, videographers, florists, wedding emcees, and cake makers. In its bid to position itself as an “urban wedding destination,” newly opened Conrad Manila sought the assistance of WE, the country’s wedding bible, in staging the event. “We worked around the theme luxe seaside,” said Kitten Zapata, editor in chief of WE. “We came up with such a theme because we want to establish Conrad Manila as a bay hotel and ideal wedding and party venue, especially during …

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Of dream bridal gowns and sunset weddings

Fashion designers Francis Libiran and Patricia Santos were the featured talents in a recent bridal show at Conrad Manila’s Forbes ballroom. Organized by Manila Bulletin’s Wedding Essentials (WE) Magazine, “The Journey to I Do” was a day-long bridal showcase, which featured top brands and wedding suppliers, including high-end jewelry brands like Bulgari and Jewelmer, photographers, videographers, emcees, music providers, florists, makeup artists, and cake makers. The event culminated in a fashion show in the evening featuring professional as well as celebrity models such as Lovi Poe, Christian Bautista, and Venus Raj. In its bid to position itself as an “urban wedding destination,” Conrad Manila sought WE’s help in staging the event. “We worked around the theme luxe seaside,” said Kitten Zapata, editor in chief of WE. “We came up with such a …

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Cristalle’s wedding at The Pen for a special guest

Because of her love for her grandfather Hilarion “Larry” Henares, Cristalle Belo Henares, daughter of Vicki Belo and Atom Henares, married her Australian fiancé Justin Pitt last Thursday in civil rights at the Peninsula Manila’s Conservatory, seven days before her big wedding in Lake Como, Italy. Meanwhile, the couple’s selected guests from Manila and various parts of the world, including Rajo Laurel, Liz Uy, and Tim Yap, have begun arriving at the scenic Lake Como area in Northern Italy for their Sept. 15 altar date. Wearing a classic, bias-cut mikado silk bridal gown with Sabrina neckline, skirt pockets, and hand-stitched floral appliqué by Vania Romoff, Cristalle, head honcho of the Belo line of over-the-counter beauty products, exchanged I do’s with Justin, a seasoned hotelier in Australia, before family and a select group …

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When beauty and wellness meet

One of the gifts of the magi to the Baby Jesus can now be yours, and we’re not referring to gold. Rustan’s The Beauty Source recently launched celebrated British organic beauty and wellness brand Neal’s Yard Remedies (NYR), including its full line of anti-aging skincare products made from the essence of frankincense. Calum Mackay, NYR’s director of international sales, and Amy Wise, NYR’s assistant international partnership manager, graced the recent ribbon cutting of the brand’s first boutique in the Philippines at Rustan’s Makati. They later drove to Sonya’s Garden in Cavite with a group of lifestyle journalists to further explain the brand. NYR’s award-winning, anti-aging Rejuvenating Frankincense Skincare Collection is said to be ideal for all skin types in helping cleanse, tone, and firm up the skin to reduce visible signs of aging. It doesn’t hurt that its pleasant aroma has a therapeutic effect that’s said to combine “calming and uplifting frankincense oil, oil-balancing mandarin and cooling antiseptic bergamot.” Frankincense is derived from the sap …

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NAPOLCOM turns 50

Images by Noel b. Pabalate The National Police Commission (NAPOLCOM), the administrative body in charge of running the Philippine National Police (PNP), celebrates its 50th year on September 8 with renewed energy and optimism regarding the state of the country’s 170,000-strong police force and the important and indispensable role it plays in enforcing the law, protecting citizens from lawless elements, and helping win President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on criminality and the proliferation of illegal drugs in the Philippines. Under the leadership of NAPOLCOM Commissioner and Vice Chair Rogelio Casurao, who assumed the post last March, the police commission proceeds apace with its priority to ensure a “competent, well-trained, well-equipped, and well-compensated” police force.Casurao, a lawyer by profession, reports directly to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Ismael Sueno, …

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Fiery dishes in cold weather

After years of serving Bicolanos in the cities of Legazpi and Naga with authentic regional dishes such as tinutungang manok, pinangat, tinapa rice, Bahay Kubo salad, Bicol express, and laing as well as exotic ice cream flavors like creamy pili, rich cacao, and spicy sili (pepper), 1st Colonial restaurant has moved closer to Metro Manila with the recent opening of its first restaurant in Tagaytay. In a move that could best be described as from one volcano to another, 1st Colonial opened its first branch outside the Bicol region last July. Located at Magallanes Square along Tagaytay-Nasugbu Highway, the restaurant has been attracting a mixed crowd of locals and Metro Manilans alike intrigued by its unusual but savory offerings. Bicolanos who now call Metro Manila and the Southern Tagalog region their home as well …

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Ombudsman Morales leads Ramon Magsaysay awardees

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales will receive along with five other awardees the Ramon Magsaysay Award in ceremonies at the Cultural Center of the Philippines tomorrow, birth anniversary of the late President Ramon Magsaysay. Morales has a high conviction rate – 74 percent – in her work as Ombudsman, but declined to compare herself with her predecessors in an intervaiew. If there’s one thing which annoys her, she said, it’s being labeled as selective and biased in favor of former President Benigno Aquino III, who appointed her ombudsman in 2011. A year earlier, Aquino had chosen Morales over then Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona to administer his oath of office as president. Morales said she and the former president shared the belief that Corona’s appointment by then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo a month …

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All the pretty horses

Images by Noel Pabalate To mark Magis’ 40th anniversary, Dimensione, exclusive Philippine distributor of the Italian-made high-end furniture and home accessories brand, has tapped 14 local artists from Secret Fresh gallery to reinterpret the Magis Rocky. Designed by Australian industrial designer Marc Newson, the Rocky is made of rotational and molded polyethylene in the shape of a miniature horse that comes with its own saddle and a pair of stirrups. In keeping with its name, the accent piece rocks and, depending on the person’s weight, can be sat on. The plain, unadorned version comes in white, brown, and black, and retails at P59,950 at Dimensione’s Bonifacio Global City (BGC) branch on 28th Street corner 7th street. Part of the event’s fun is to see how artists Renato Barja, Jr., Iya Consorio, Egg Fiasco, …

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Mad skills

Nothing happens until the cash register rings. Guided by this age-old marketing adage, the faculty of the De La Salle-College of St. Benilde’s (DLS-CSB) Fashion Design and Merchandising Program led by veteran designer Lulu Tan-Gan, has been working for several years now to produce graduates that aren’t only well-trained in their chosen fields, but also have enough business sense to survive the crowded and competitive fashion scene. Apart from fashion design, the faculty offers courses in styling and merchandising. All three majors are four-year courses. Unlike most fashion design and merchandising courses offered in other schools, students at DLS-CSB are exposed to both the business and creative sides of fashion. This was evident as graduating students recently staged Sinulid, a fashion exhibit and show at SM Aura Premier. Styling and merchandising …

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A step in the right direction

Pedro, the affordable luxury accessories brand from Singapore, recently unveiled its fall/winter 2016 collection of men’s and ladies’ shoes and bags inspired by themes found in an art gallery. Vince Acop, a Filipino who is the brand’s Singapore-based fashion coach, flew to Manila to personally introduce the collection, classified under Youthism, Grey-Scale, Subdivision, Suburbanites, Highlanders, Varsity Blues, and Genesis. Apart from such fall/winter staples as black and gray, this season’s colors are decidedly muted and even a tad unusual compared to past collections. Pedro’s color palette for women, said Acop, reflects the current trend towards “lighter” shades, such as olive, champagne, and a range of blush and even orangey tones echoing the sunset. In lieu of red, Pedro’s Singapore-based in-house designers are pushing burgundy. Deep navy, which is evident mostly in …

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