Fancy Footwork | RAJO! for MILANOS

Photobucket

My good friend Rajo Laurel launched his shoe collection the other day, citing inspiration and influence from Japan. This made me curious since I’ve always been fascinated with the place, and I also knew that one could trust Rajo to come out with something well made, presentable and at the same time unique and with a good amount of quirk and twist. These are a number of pieces that I really liked (especially the Toshi, refer to photos above and below) I expect to acquire a few more pairs from this range, as a collaboration like this doesn’t come everyday.

Toshi

Photobucket
Koji
Photobucket
Kyoto
Photobucket
Daimos
Photobucket
One other great thing about every pair is that a small shoehorn is included, as well as a fabric cover. I believe that these small, considerate and detailed attention helps this line standout and give one the sense that each shoe will last a while when taken care of properly.
Photobucket

Unbelievable value, most shoes are in the 1200-1500 bracket! Great selection, congratulations Rajo! 

Photobucket

Photobucket

Available at select SM Department stores.

Foodtrip | Yakiniku Sakura

Photobucket

After a pretty uneventful day of changing watch straps and leisurely driving in Manila (yes, I like to drive) I stopped by a favorite restaurant of mine. Yakiniku Sakura in my book is one of the best restaurants to visit when you’re in Makati, it’s quiet, unassuming and simply delicious for it’s price range. When dining here, I highly recommend the US prime rib karubi which is a set you can order for two or three persons. I was feeling a little more than peckish so I ordered the latter. Just look at that beautiful marbling! (refer to photo above)

Melon…

Photobucket

…Cream Soda! This is a thirst quencher as it is a joy for sweet tooths!

Photobucket

Garlic, chili and an unidentified sauce.

Photobucket

Even if you don’t really know how to cook, the results are always pretty good. I think it has to do with the marinade (light soy sauce and mirin?) and of course how good the meat is.

Photobucket

And of course the complimentary papaya.

Photobucket

Yakiniku Sakura is a restaurant that is simply just a good place to eat, and private enough for a date, coupled with really good service makes it a winner. Pay no attention to the interiors as they aren’t really trying to impress, just try to focus on what all restaurants should -the food.

Photobucket

Yakiniku Sakura Restaurant 

1020 A. Arnaiz Avenue (Pasay Road)

Makati, Metro Manila

Contact: 844-4489

Claudio Bravo: Sojourn in Manila | Metropolitan Museum of Manila

Photobucket

portrait of Margarita Cojuangco, 1968


In celebration of strengthening ties between Chile and the Philippines, the Embassy of Chile and Energy Development Corporation (EDC) present Claudio Bravo: Sojourn in Manila, a landmark exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila. The inauguration of the exhibit is timed to coincide with the National Day celebraton of Chile.   

The paintings of Bravo produced during his stay in Manila in 1968 will be featured in the exhibit.  Bravo looked back at his work in the Philippines as his “most lucid paintings, because it was a different race –beautiful! …a different vision of the world and of light.”

Bravo was born in Valparaiso, Chile in 1936 and passed away last year in Taroudant, Morocco. He took art lessons with Miguel Venegas Cifuentes, dancing with the Compania de Ballet de Chile and acting at the Teatro Ensayo. Painting, however, would become his ultimate vocation. At 17 he held his first solo exhibition. He then moved to the southern city of Conception and quickly gained several portrait commissions. His earnings would allow him to move to Madrid in 1961, where he perfected his craft and gained recognition for his technical virtuosity and hyperrealistic style. It was not long before he became a sought after portraitist amongst social luminaries.

Oscar M. Lopez, Chairman Emeritus of EDC says, “In those portraits, in the glamour and spirit of the personalities he depicted, one cannot but sense the optimism, confidence, vitality and sense of pride, but also the innocence, that characterized the Philippines, and the Manila, of the 1960s.”  This would be the last body of portraits Bravo would ever produce before being catapulted into the international contemporary art scene for the hyperrealist still lifes that would eventually define his career.

Photobucket

As geothermal energy producer EDC expands its offices to Chile for what it hopes will be a long and fruitful collaboration, the exhibit commemorates the late artist on the 202nd anniversary of the Independence of Chile. His Excellency Ambassador Roberto Mayorga of the Embassy of Chile says, “We are totally convinced that –along with diplomatic, political and economic relationships—cultural links are fundamental to build bridges of understanding and unity among nations”

Photobucket

Claudio Bravo: Sojourn in Manila is open to the public on September 19 and will run until October 20, 2012. The exhibit will be accompanied by weekly activities on Saturdays, including a curator’s talk, portraiture lecture and drawing session.

The Metropolitan Museum of Manila is located at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Manila. Museum hours are from 9am – 6pm, Monday to Saturday; closed on Sundays and first Mondays of the month and on holidays. For details on the exhibit, please call 708-7829. Visit  www.metmuseum.ph. ###

RETROSUPERFUTURE | Sunglasses, Handmade in Italy

Photobucket

Flat Top Francis Hieroglyphics

Clean lines go well with the hieroglyphics inspired design, for a little bit of flash and urban appeal. I can understand why the brand has gotten so much attention from the Hollywood set.

PhotobucketPhotobucket

Giaguaro Horizon

Split mirroring on the lens blocks out the sun’s rays while the lower portion is lighter for accurate color viewing. I like this pair because they add a little quirk to the otherwise standard pair of metal/acetate frames. Trust SUPER to always surprise with their designs.

Photobucket

Photobucket

Racer

Keyhole bridge, and subtle details keep this on the top of my weekly rotation list. A nod to the golden age of racing and it’s legends, the masculine Racer works on a lot face shapes and would do well for anyone who likes the smell of petrol in the morning.

Photobucket

Photobucket

The moment you put your hands on these babies, you immediately notice the craftsmanship and detail put into each pair of sunglasses. They fit reassuringly well, as if molded especially for your face, and the Zeiss lenses’ glare reducing performance is unparalleled. Here’s a video for the discerning few. 


Photobucket

Unique Bisyo | A Collector’s Dream

Photobucket

A gem of a watch store, tucked away on the top floor of Makati Cinema Square is a veritable haven for vintage watch enthusiasts looking for new old stock, drawer aged mint pieces, and rare peculiar examples that will impress even the more accomplished watch connoisseur.

Photobucket

Seikos

Photobucket

Photobucket

This piece really sung to me, just look how great those square sub-dials are! I also really like the baton hour markers, and of course the day function. Hopefully next time I visit their shop it’ll still be there!

Photobucket

Another interesting piece was this one below, it has a qibla compass which tells the wearer where mecca is.

Photobucket

Alarm function anyone? Looks great on that NATO strap.

Photobucket

Panda dials look great and somehow always remind me of the “Paul Newman” Rolex Daytona (another grail)

Photobucket

Seiko on an “Olongapo” bracelet, popular with military personnel during the Vietnam war. Lets the wearer decorate it with emblems of any sort, crests, rank, masonic symbols?

Photobucket

Great specimen of a Bulova Accutron (world time function)

Photobucket

A “giveaway” for a supposed party that Imelda Marcos threw, and allegedly gave these trinkets away. Not sure if it’s actually a good watch or just memento quality.

Photobucket

Here’s the watch I was talking about that “sung” to me. I need an everyday watch, really I do.

Photobucket

Mang Andy’s workspace, with a Seiko(?) on a NATO strap

Photobucket

Interesting iron curtain piece.

Photobucket

Mickey Mouse homage dial?

Photobucket

A lot of PWC (Philippine Watch Club) members frequent the store as well, and it’s conveniently located right next to their trusted watchmaker, Mang Andy’s shop that takes care of most of Unique Bisyo’s repairs and can make your acquisition look as good as new (or make it run smoothly as restoration is generally frowned upon and thought to reduce value when done too drastically )

Mang Andy has put all of his children through school through his craft, and may have been servicing watches even before you were in kindergarten so I would trust him with even more complicated and delicate repairs.

Photobucket

You may even find a watch with your birth year. Making your purchase even more special. 

Photobucket

Besides being the place to go to for information about different calibres, and where to find your “grails” the owners also give very reasonable prices for their selection which I found refreshing. You’ll definitely find a piece to fit your style and budget.

Photobucket

They also sell brand new, modern watches but still with an expert’s eye to selection (no bling bling here, just great timepieces)

Photobucket

A ploprof homage.

Photobucket

Photobucket

Unique Bisyo is located at the 3rd floor of Makati Cinema Square.

TOMS x Tyler Ramsey | Benefit for Flood Relief Ops of Philippine Red Cross

Photobucket

Tyler Ramsey was in Manila to collaborate with TOMS for the benefit of the flood relief operations of the Philippine Red Cross. At first I thought he was the guy from Band of Horses, who happens to have the same name. But after further research (ie: googling, bing-ing, yahoo-ing) I learned that our energetic and adventurous American painter has garnered a number of high profile clients with his passionate style of painting without brushes.

His creations that night reminded me of Jackson Pollock’s style, dynamic and expressive. It was also great seeing him in person creating, and showcasing his art live for all of those in attendance to see.

Photobucket

The famous “One for One” ethos, that says if you buy a pair from TOMS that immediately counts as another pair given to a child in need was made even more meaningful when they announced that the proceeds of the sales were to be donated to the relief operations for our flood affected countrymen.

Photobucket

The event happened at the top floor of Fully Booked at Bonifacio High Street, which made for a relaxed and young vibe.

Photobucket

Tyler Ramsey’s unique and adventurous style as seen below.

Photobucket

Tim trying to remember the words to the hits being played over loudspeakers (that made for fun audience participation)

Photobucket

A little bit more of that…

Photobucket

and voila! The finished product.

Photobucket

He painted a number of people’s shoes while urging the crowd to sing along.

Photobucket

His assistant preparing the “ammunition”

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket