Days before the event, the metro was immersed in non-stop rain. It was therefore a true blessing that on September 13 the skies cooperated with favorable weather, not to mention lighter traffic too.
Considered one of the high society events of the year, Manila’s crème dela crème converged at The Diamond Hotel along Roxas Boulevard that Wednesday night for the third edition of “Tingting’s List: The Elegant Filipinas.” As the name suggests, the event is spearheaded by one of Harper’s Bazaar’s 100 Most Beautiful Women in 1968, philanthropist and former Tarlac governor Margarita “Tingting” Conjuangco.
Along with Consul General to Monaco Fortune Ledesma and Zelda Kienle of top Philippine furniture manufacturing company Philux, Inc., Cojuangco envisioned an annual endeavor back in 2015 to acknowledge elegance over beauty, substance over form and gentility over self-importance. The result was “Tingting’s List” of 10 Filipinas who embody these qualities.
As before, this year’s honorees were women of noted repute in their respective fields. They are broadcast journalist Mitzi Borromeo, actress-TV host-artist-author Heart Evangelista-Escudero, knitwear fashion designer Lulu Tan-Gan, model-fitness icon-entrepreneur Tweetie de Leon-Gonzalez, jewelry designer Janina Dizon Hoschka, model-columnist-entrepreneur Rissa Mananquil-Trillo, retailer and children’s wear manufacturer Joanna Preysler-Francisco, children’s rights and health advocate Audrey Tan Zubiri, chef-restaurateur Ana de Ocampo, and dermatologist Anna Palabyab Rufino.
Each one had their moment on stage as they received a silver leaf trophy by noted jewelry designer Arnel Papa.
Cojuangco explained that her pet project is not just a social and fashion event but a fundraiser for worthy endeavors as well. For this edition, the chosen beneficiary was The Center for Possibilities Foundation, Inc. for autistic children, whose artworks were prominently displayed at the hotel lobby. Guests marvelled at the visual genius of the children, who despite their special needs, ably used their creative talents.
Prominently featured was young artist Vico Cham who worked on painting for the duration of the event, completing it in such a short time as shown on the screen.
Meanwhile, Samantha Kaspar, showcased her musical talent as she sang a very meaningful song with lyrics that went, “I’m not blind but I cannot always see; I’m not deaf but the sounds do not always come clear to me,” explaining how those with special needs are somehow different from everybody else.
Cojuangco encouraged guests to buy the paintings on display in support of the foundation’s objectives, foremost to empower children with learning disabilities or from “From Disabled to Enabled” as the foundation’s tag line says.
A fashion show featuring the creations of Albert Andrada served as closing activity with Mr. World Philippines 2014 Spainhour serving as groom in the bridal finale.
Ever the elegant lady that she is, Cojuangco expressed optimism that the next edition of her Elegant Filipinas list will be just as successful as this year’s event, and perhaps even surpass 2017’s impressive momentum.
In 2016, the 10 ladies honored were Felicia Atienza, Marilu Batchelor, Marissa Concepcion, Michelle Tan, Mariquita Yeung, Karen Davila, Stephanie Gonzales, Pamela Huang, Vanessa Suatengco and Dawn Zulueta.
In 2015, they were Tootsy Angara, Ching Cruz, Gwendolyn Garcia, Lucy Torres-Gomez, Zelda Kienlie, Fortune Ledesma, Amparito Llamas-Lhuillier, Mady dela Raman, Vicky Zubiri and Cindy Yang.