WALKING DOWN THE RUNWAY WITH DIPLOMATS
‘Circle of Styles’, presented by the ‘Spouses of the Heads of Mission’ left an indelible mark of fun in fashion in Manila’s social world, with its focus on culture and philanthropy. The charity fashion show was presented in partnership with Resorts World Manila, represented by Stephen Reilly COO and Rustan’s by Chairperson & CEO Nedy Tantoco. Held at the Marriott Hotel, Manila Ballroom, SHOM’s Circle of Style featured diplomats and their spouses who walked and pranced down the runway, having a good time and all for a good cause.
Notable mention to the power players headed by Consul General of Monaco, Event Chairperson Fortune Ledesma; Consul of The Gambia, Event Co-Chairperson Agnes Huibonhoa and Susan Fries, SHOM President. The dynamic trio demonstrated perfection in organizing a labor of love show by the participating members of the diplomatic corps with its aim of creating a better world for our less fortunate. A first, SHOM featured a unique silent auction with seven lots, such as: Australia – Lunch for 8 featuring Aussie Food, Wine & Beer at the Ambassador’s residence; Bangladesh – viewing of Ambassador’s art collection with a Bangladesh lunch for 8; Canada – a golf game with the Ambassador and a Taste of Canada lunch for 2 and others.
The fashion show sponsored by Rustan’s featured dressy casual by various designers, and Filipiniana by wrap artiste Ditta Sandico. As we were seated at the front row, I felt the energy of the enthusiastic crowd behind us. When US Ambassador Sung Kim walked the runway, the ladies behind us chanted “U.S.A, U.S.A.., to the delight of the Ambassador. The diplomatic ladies who modeled were: H.E. Bita Rasoulian, Austria; H.E. Marion Derckx, Netherlands; H.E. Aruni Ranaraja, Sri Lanka; H.E. Capaya Gonzalez, Venezuela. The male Ambassadors were: H.E, Rodrigo Souza, Brazil; H.E. John Holmes, Canada; H.E. Jose Capdevila, Chile; H.E. Victor Jaramillo, Colombia; H.E. Jaroslav Olsa, Czech Republic; H.E. Jan Christensen, Denmark; H.E. Nikolaos Kaimenakis, Greece; H.E. Jozsef Bencze , Hungary; H.E. Jaideep Mazundar, India; H.E. Effie Matityau; H.E. Dato Rashid, Malaysia; H.E. Dr. Aman Rashid, Pakistan; H.E. Igor Khovaev, Russian Federation; H.E. Harald Fries, Sweden; H.E. Thanatip Upatising, Thailand; H.E. Daniel Pruce, United Kingdom; H.E. Sung Kim, USA; H.E. Ly Quoc Tuan, Vietnam.
A raffle was held with airline tickets from Turkish Airlines and Philippine Air Lines. The principal beneficiary, Hands On Manila Foundation, Inc. provides individuals and groups with diverse, flexible volunteer opportunities and innovative solutions to development challenges. As SHOM President Susan Fries said in her speech: “Thank you for supporting our vision of bringing life changing help to the underprivileged women and children in the Philippines.”