Hülsta and Rolf Benz now in Manila
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German luxury furniture company Hüls Group recently opened its flagship store in the Philippines, featuring top-of-the line designs by Hülsta and Rolf Benz.
Hülsta takes pride in being the market leader in today’s modern living room and bedroom needs, while Rolf Benz is unparalleled in delivering design and comfort in its sofa range.

Multi Forma 1
Multi Forma 7

These are done with greatest care for the environment, carrying the Blue Angel environmental seal throughout all ranges.
While Hülsta’s furniture are distributed around the world, its pieces are still manufactured at the German sites in Ottenstein and Stadtlohn.
The factories and offices of both brands are equipped with the latest machinery, following strict procedures to guarantee the highest level of product and service qualities.

Multi Forma 2
Mega Design (2)
Multi Forma 5

If it’s seating you’re looking for, consider Rolf Benz, whose tag line is “the architecture of seating”.
They use up to nine different kinds of foam with different densities for the furniture’s interior structure.
Rolf Benz’s R&D group scientifically studies the ideal softness or hardness for every part of the body that makes contact with its seating.

Rolf Benz

“We are very proud to present our latest venture in the world of furniture and interior design,” said Jaime Daez, Managing Director of Hülsta and Rolf Benz PH. “Hülsta and Rolf Benz are known for applying state-of-the-art German technology in all their products. We cater to the most discerning, high-end clients, offering nothing less than the best.”

Visit the newly opened Hülsta and Rolf Benz showroom at the 3rd Floor, Fully Booked Building 6
11th Avenue, Bonifacio High Street, Taguig. For inquries, call +632 738.2430.

Robbie Antonio: Idol!
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I was going to blog about being stuck in a three-hour traffic jam last night. But hell, I just read about Robbie Antonio in Vanity Fair.
First, he’s building a 25,000-square-foot home in Manila, designed by renowned Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas.
Second, it’s going to house a museum that will include his commissioned portraits by world-class artists such as Julian Schnabel, Marilyn Minter, and David Salle.

Robbie Antonio in Singapore

Who is Robbie Antonio?
He’s the 36-year-old managing director and board member of Century Properties, son Joey Antonio and wife Hilda, and brother to Jigger, Marco and Carlo.
Among Century Properties developments are Azure Urban Resort Residences, endorsed and partly designed by Robbie’s friend, Paris Hilton

Paris Hilton and Robbie Antonio of Century Properties
Paris Hilton Azure

The Trump Tower Manila

Donald Trump Jr. and Robbie Antono
With Donald Trump Jr. with Robbie Antonio

and Acqua Iguazu by John Hitchcox and Philippe Starck

Robbie Antonio, Philippe Starck, Jigger Antonio
L-R: Robbie Antonio, Philippe Starck, Marco Antonio

Listen, this isn’t a sponsored post and I don’t know Robbie Antonio personally.
I have met him once during the Acqua Iguazu press conference and found him pleasant.
Many rich people in Manila have their homes featured in glossy magazines, but I find them “lifestyles of rich and boring” for the most part.
Now if Rem Koolhaas is doing your house, it will be anything but boring.
Take a look at some of his work:

Educatorium (University of Utrecht) in Utrecht by Rem Koolhaas
Educatorium, University of Utrecht

Rem Koolhaas Seattle Public Library
Seattle Public Library

Rem Koolhaas IIT Chicago
Illinois Institute of Technology

03 Casa da Música 7361
Casa de Musica, Portugal

Now take a look at some of the portraits in Robbie’s collection—they give a whole new meaning to term “selfie”

Robbie Antonio by Kenny Scharf
Interstellar (Portrait of Robbie Antonio) by Kenny Scharf

Robbie Antonio
By David Salle

Robbie Antonio by Takashi Murakami
By Takashi Murakami
By David LaChapelle
By Damien Hirst
By Julian Schnabel

And hey, I don’t judge if he wants to spend money this way. After all I did have my portrait done by Crajes—though mine is more affordable.
I just wish I knew him well enough to see his house!!
But reality bites. I already have a house and it needs fixing because I heard it’s gonna rain hard on Saturday and I have flooding problems.
To know more about Robbie, click HERE.
To see the Vanity Fair story, click HERE.

Stefanel opens flagship store at SM Aura
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Stefanel, together with local partner Nuovo Moda Concepts Inc., launched its first store in the Philippines with a cocktail party and trunk show at the new SM Aura Premiere at Bonifacio Global City.
Guests walked into a space surrounded by huge images of Stefanel’s ad campaign as realized by Mario Testino and Stephen Gan.

The venue featuring blowups of the Stefanel S:S 2013 Ad Campaign by Mario Testino and Stephen Gan

They were treated to music, a trunk show with models weaving in and out of the crowd, and never-ending bubbly by Fifi L’Amour. The evening was hosted by Tessa Prieto Valdes and was graced by Mr. Guissepe Stefanel, CEO of Stefanel.

Giuseppe Stefanel and Tessa Prieto Valdes

Mr. Stefanel flew into Manila just for the event, along with members of Stefanel’s international team led by Daniela de Piccoli.

Giuseppe Stefanel, Daniela de Piccoli, Harley Sy copy
L-R: Giuseppe Stefanel, Daniela de Piccoli, Harley Sy

The event was also graced by the new Italian Ambassador, HE Massimo Roscigno and his wife Agnes.

Ali Yu, Andrew Gan, Agnes Roscigno, HE Ambassador Massimo Roscigno
L-R: Ali Yu, Andrew Gan, Agnes Roscigno, HE Ambassador Massimo Roscigno

Also spotted: Dr. Glenn Carandang, Carol Garcia, Cinthy Tambunting Recto, Tessa Prieto Valdes, Chatty Roxas
Dr. Glenn Carandang, Carol Garcia, Cinthy Tambunting Recto, Tessa Prieto Valdes, Chatty Roxas

Anne Marie Saguil, Sonsoles Barretto, Karen Robicheaux
Anne Marie Saguil, Sonsoles Barretto, Karen Robicheaux

Alvaro Pertierra, Xavier Btesh, Frank Ordonez
Alvaro Pertierra, Xavier Btesh, Frank Ordonez

Katya and Tania Lichauco, Bettina Osmena, Baby Girl Fricke
Katya and Tania Lichauco, Bettina Osmena, Baby Girl FrickeDSC_8539

Daniela de Piccoli, Andrew Gan, Dr. Vicki Belo, Giuseppe Stefanel, Baby Cheng, Carol Sy, Daniela Cheng
Daniela de Piccoli, Andrew Gan, Dr. Vicki Belo, Giuseppe Stefanel, Baby Cheng, Carol Sy, Daniela Cheng

Founded in Italy more than 50 years ago, Stefanel has grown to more than 450 stores in 30 countries worldwide.
The Philippine flagship store was designed and fitted by the celebrated Italian design firm Iride.
As a global brand, Stefanel’s design specifications are very exacting—everything had to be be imported from Italy down to the stool one sits on in the changing rooms.
The 105-square-meter space showcases Stefanel’s ladies’ and accessories collections, particularly knitwear, which has been in this very Italian company’s DNA since the beginning.

No wifi, no life
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This past week our internet at home conked out and my kids got really upset.
At the same time, my SIM card died. The landline was dead. The water pump got busted, and our aircon was dripping.
You’d think Mercury was in retrograde—but only in our house.
It was hell being a house manager while trying to recover from my surgery.
To fix the internet, I made a few tweets to @PLDThome, but it took them about five days to fix the problem. Apparently a fiber optic was corroded.
My SIM card was replaced the next day through my dad’s secretary and account officer.
Our driver was able to fix the water pump by himself, and the aircon guys arrived the next day.
Prior to repair, the kids were feeling withdrawal from internet, so I took them to our small apartment at the Shangri-La and stayed there until 8 PM for two days.

The boys in the apartment

I can’t tell you how traumatized I’ve been this last week.
The solution: get a backup internet from another company—one in our room and one in the kids’ room.
We also have two landlines now.
Long before wifi and cellphones, we had three landlines at my parents’ house. Back in the day there was only PLDT and it wasn’t easy to get a line. You kind of had to have connections to get a phone number.
Telephone lines would easily conk out, especially if it was raining, so it was important to have a backup line.
During that time, no telephone, no life.

Nowadays people don’t care much for the landline, but I still prefer to use one when having a conversation.
So after this week’s trauma, I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at the thought that we now have two wifis at home—both with speeds of 7 mbps. If one conks out, I’ll have a backup, and I never have to go through that suffering again.
Unless of course both conk out at the same time, then we’ll just go to the apartment.
Didn’t realize how important wifi was until only this week. No wifi, no life.

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