Probably the most elegant party that took place recently was George Sison’s birthday celebration at the Makati Garden Club. Leave it to George to light up the whole garden and make sure that it wouldn’t rain so that guests would enjoy the Eden-like atmosphere. Even the first so-called couple on earth Adam and Eve would have been in awe indeed with no snake to worry about. This garden paradise is located at the corner of Edsa and Ayala Avenue, the most crowded avenues in Makati, and is probably the only green portion left in the whole city.
When guests arrived, they got a chance to walk the red carpet and strolled through a candle lighted path over a little bridge towards the covered terrace where champagne and the most delicious pass-arounds were being served.
When we arrived, several dozen guests were already mingling, exchanging tête-à-têtes. Naturally, one’s attention is taken by the presence of three international beauties: our first Miss International Gemma Cruz-Araneta; first Miss Universe Gloria Diaz with her devoted partner Michael de Jesus, EVP of the currently very busy RCBC; and of course, our second Miss Universe, Ballet Philippines Chair Margie Moran-Floirendo. The three last posed together in the year 2000 in another one of George’s past birthday celebrations which underscores “deepening friendships” as mentioned in his invitation.
Amongst his other guests, we spied former governor Chavit Singson with his lovely girlfriend Jazz Carreon, having a conversation with Lady Minda Feliciano Lonsdale, here for a short vacation and Virginia Lane who just arrived from Australia the evening before; also, designer Lulu Tan-Gan from a European sojourn; Megaworld’s Kevin and Michelle Tan; painter Phyllis Zaballero; columnists Chit Roces and Vergel Santos; former DBP executive Leila Pañares; Monaco Consul Fortune Ledesma; the Jacintos: RJ, Frannie, Rupert, Tina and Patrick with amore SSI and Rustan’s chair Nedy Tantoco; the beauteous DJ Lopez; self-made billionaire Joseph Calata with infanticipating wife Nel (their third); and other gorgeous ladies like Tess Schoefer, Linda Ley and Jojo Zabarte; PR par-excellence for all MVP’s group of companies, the debonair Mike Toledo; Café Juanita’s Efren “Boy” Vazquez; international musical theater actor Leo Valdez; Bulgari and Hermes’ Mario Katigbak who George says, “helped conceptualize the evening’s ambiance”; lending support to George were his siblings, Louie and Margarita.
After the cocktails, guests were given a second chance to cross the garden paradise once more as they moved to Maria Luisa’s Garden Room where a sumptuous dinner awaited us — truly an understatement. Our compliments to the chef! Violin music of the most romantic kind accompanied us throughout dinner. George does know how to entertain which is so reminiscent of his “Stars of Giorgio” evenings.
As dessert and coffee were being served, George picks up the microphone and introduces the entertainment for the evening featuring soprano Jade Riccio and tenor Miguel Castro. In between songs, George called good friend Mon Tulfo to come up front to share his views on the Duterte administration, having been the one who “pushed” the incoming president to run.
By the way, Mon has turned down a cabinet position but President Digong turned around and appointed his sister Wanda Corazon Teo as Tourism secretary. To avoid turning the evening into something political, George immediately interjected jokes to everyone’s delight making Michael de Jesus comment, “I didn’t realize George had a true knack for being funny.” Michael probably has forgotten that his wife Gloria and George hosted a talk-show over GMA-7 entitled, “Manila After Dark.”
Then, a cake was rolled-in and George asked all Geminis to please come forward and light their respective candles and all acquiesced albeit with a big smile: Via Mare’s Glenda Barretto, RJ and Frannie Jacinto, Lady Minda Feliciano Lonsdale, Chavit Singson, tenor Miguel Castro and Mike de Jesus. After lighting the candles, they were instructed to pull favors from the cake and other guests were requested to do the same and received messages like, “You are successful because you know how to relax, play and have fun” and “Smile and laugh your way to greater health and prosperity.