MANILA, Philippines - The Redemptorist parish dedicated to Our Lady of Perpetual Help was beautifully decorated with flowers for the wedding of Christy Aleli Villanueva to Ryan Sandoval. Christy is the daughter of Marley Midel Villanueva and the late Aundry Villanueva. Ryan is the son of Romy and Susan (nee Villacorta) Sandoval.
A reception at the grand ballroom of the Casino Español followed the solemn rites. The newlyweds sat in a gazebo amid lilies and orchids. Vines holding luscious grapes were entwined on the trellis. ?Delicious,? pronounced Victoria Moraza, one of the madrinas, sampling a cluster.
The St. Jude Thaddeus Chapel of the Visayas military command?s Camp Lapu-Lapu was the scene of the afternoon wedding of May Salvaña to Charlie Unchuan. She is the daughter of Col. Edsel Salvaña of the Philippine Air Force and Ma. Rosario Salvaña; he is the son of Benito and Lelah (nee Nacua) Unchuan.
The chapel was a hub of animated conversation as people waited for the bride. Cebu?s Unchuan clan is one of the biggest and most prominent ... Some came from afar for this family milestone, so there was a lot of catching up.
The fun continued at the reception at the Cebu Country Club. The consensus was that the person who enjoyed the festivity most was Charlie?s grandmother, Luz Alfonzo Unchuan.
Another old and prominent Cebu family, the Gillamacs, went to Manila en masse with relatives and friends in tow for the wedding of Rea Joseph to Lyle Gonzalez. Rea is the daughter of the honorary consul of Latvia Robert Lim Joseph and the former Ida Manalo; Lyle is the son of Sergio Jr. and Olivia (nee Gillamac) Gonzalez.
The wedding at the St. James the Great Parish in Ayala Alabang was followed by a reception in the ballroom of the Bellevue Hotel, also in Alabang. Cocktails and canapes were served after 6 p.m.
Two prominent families
The air-conditioned Sacred Heart Parish, one of the biggest in Cebu, was filled to capacity but remained comfortably cool one sunny afternoon when Giselle Po and Jerry Robert Yang were married. She is the daughter of Jaime and Rosie Gwen Po; he is the son of Robert and Nelly Yang.
The marriage united two prominent families well-known in Cebu?s business circles. An elaborate Chinese lauriat was served at the Cebu Grand Convention Center.
Coffee table book
The Arts Council Foundation has published a massive coffee table book, ?Cebu, Pride of Place? that celebrates photography as a fine art. All the pictures were taken by ace photographer Billy Mondoñedo. They are a feast of colors, patterns, scenes, and hidden perceptions.
Billy and his wife Marlene (nee Navarro) hosted a pre-launch party at Aziza, the fine dining area of their Tinder Box branch in Cebu. VIP guest was Tourism Secretary Ace Durano, a native of Danao City in northern Cebu.
Congratulations to Marissa Fernan and Elvira Luym, co-publishers; Thelma Sioson San Juan, editorial consultant; Alya Honasan, who wrote all the captions; Norrino Hernandez, art director; Aldrin Garcia, digital imaging; Erwin Lim, underwater photos; project consultants Petite Garcia (president of the Arts Council) and Teresin Mendezona; and project coordinator Mariz Rallos who, with Garcia Cabatingan, handles the Arts Council office.
Press luminaries from Manila included Metro Society?s Glenna Aquino, Philippine Star?s Letty Lopez, and Louie Cruz. Arts Council trustees present included Annie Osmeña Aboitiz, Elena Chiongbian Young, Lydia Aznar Alfonso, Maxwell Espina and Lot-Lot Neri.
The book was formally launched at the inaugural of the plush North Wing of SM City Cebu. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who was there, said she was very impressed by the pictures.
Everyone expected her to officiate at the ceremony then proceed to other engagements. But she lingered, greeting practically everyone, and sat on a signature sofa by Kenneth Cobonpue for a photo with the Arts Council trustee.
As of Jan. 31 only about 600 copies of the book were left. It is available at Tinder Box, Arts Council office, Marco Polo and Waterfront hotels, and Powerbooks and Destination Specialists at SM.
?Cebu, Pride of Place? will be launched Feb. 28 at The Podium in Ortigas with Sen. Mar Roxas as guest of honor. Two launchings will be held in the United States?May 9 in San Francisco and any day between May 19 and 23 in New York City, through Ambassador Hilario Davide Jr.
The former Chief Justice is now ambassador of the Philippines to the United Nations. His hometown of Argao in the south is featured in the book.
A second printing may not be easy, but it just might have to be done.