TASTEMAKER

Town & Country (Philippines) - - TASTEMAKER -

FA­VORITE CITY HO­TEL Fasano Sao Paulo in Brazil, Le Meurice in Paris, Four Sea­sons in Mex­ico City, and Cape Grace in Cape Town.

COUN­TRY­SIDE HO­TEL OR RE­SORT

Fazenda Catuçaba in Brazil, Es­tan­cia La Bamba de Areco in Ar­gentina, Ol Donyo Lodge in Kenya.

TRAVEL MUST-HAVES Pleats, please, in all shapes and col­ors (sharp and in­de­struc­tible as travel sta­ples). A pair of binoc­u­lars (a must on safari) and a killer itin­er­ary.

PLACE YOU’VE NEVER BEEN, BUT WOULD

MOST LIKE TO VISIT Is­tan­bul. Ev­ery time we plan to go some­thing al­ways hap­pens and we never end up go­ing. Maybe in 2018!

MOST MEM­O­RABLE TRIP Ev­ery African safari is al­ways mem­o­rable. But my most mem­o­rable trip this past year was Cuba: pro­found, ro­man­tic, melan­cholic, and just way cool.

FA­VORITE WAY TO UNWIND Get­ting a mas­sage. I also like go­ing to the beach.

GUILTY PLEA­SURES Weekly mas­sages at home; half a pas­try (so half the guilt) for break­fast; dark choco­late af­ter lunch or din­ner.

GREAT­EST EX­TRAV­A­GANCE Alas, fash­ion, a de­pre­ci­at­ing as­set. And main­tain­ing the high­lights on my hair. It takes a vil­lage!

EN­TER­TAIN­ING STA­PLES Cock­tails care of my hus­band, mu­sic, home-cooked food com­bined with Sarsa ca­ter­ing, a good mix of peo­ple, and flow­ers— lots of it.

YOUR TIPS TO A MEM­O­RABLE CEL­E­BRA­TION

Book a good res­tau­rant with great food, am­bi­ence and ser­vice; wear some­thing fab­u­lous; just have a good time. You’re there to celebrate, not stress.

FA­VORITE MEAL TO SERVE YOUR GUESTS

Roasted rolled pep­pers with an­chovies for starters, a good pasta, Sarsa’s inasal lumpia and isaw.

DREAM DIN­NER GUESTS Carla Soz­zani, Mirella Ric­cia­rdi, Barack and Michelle Obama, Ralph Bous­field, Oprah Win­frey, Miriam De­fen­sor San­ti­ago, Lu­cia van der Post (whom I ac­tu­ally had din­ner with be­fore in Mar­rakech and she’s a riot), Pablo Pi­casso, Manuel Ocampo, Ilse Craw­ford, Ernest Hem­ing­way, An­thony Bour­dain, and David Tang. But since they’re all opin­ion­ated, the din­ner might end very early.

FA­VORITE CHEFS Ita­mae-sans

(Ja­panese sushi chefs) and my brother, of course.

FA­VORITE DISH Sushi.

FA­VORITE RES­TAU­RANTS I haven’t met a sushi bar I didn’t like, but in Tokyo, Sushi Iwa, Yoshi­take, Jiro, and Shinji Kane­saka; in Manila, Tsumura. For tep­pa­nyaki, Ukai Tei in Tokyo. And, of course, Sarsa.

CHEAP EAT REC­OM­MEN­DA­TION

Sin­ga­pore Hawker food.

WHAT WOULD YOUR LAST MEAL on EARTH BE? What else? Sushi. Prefer­ably by Jiro.

MOST MEM­O­RABLE MEAL Ev­ery year it’s dif­fer­ent, but this past year it was def­i­nitely En­rique Olvera’s Pu­jol in Mex­ico City. I was with my hus­band and I had the best mole of my life.

DRINK OF CHOICE Only wine.

DESSERT I’m a re­cov­er­ing choco­holic.

WRITER OR BOOK Long Walk to

Free­dom, by Nel­son Man­dela. I’ve re­cently dis­cov­ered Do­minick Dunne (a few decades late) so I’m cur­rently read­ing all his books.

FILM Any­thing by Wes An­der­son.

FA­VORITE FORM OF EN­TER­TAIN­MENT

Movie night at home with the kids.

FA­VORITE AC­TORS OF ALL TIME Colin Firth and Har­ri­son Ford (dou­ble swoon).

MOST TREA­SURED POS­SES­SION My

fam­ily.

FA­VORITE WORK OF ART David Hock­ney’s por­traits, Pi­casso’s ce­ram­ics, Matisse’s cut-outs, and Choupatte Géante, by Claude Lalanne.

FA­VORITE ARTISTS Aside from the ones I men­tioned above, I also like RM de Leon, Peter Doig, Ce­cily Brown, Chris Ofili, Frida Kahlo, and Manuel Ocampo.

IF YOU HAD 24 HOURS TO TAKE SOME­ONE AROUND YOUR HOME­TOWN, BA­COLOD,

WHERE WOULD YOU GO? We would have break­fast at Pendy’s, then head out to Sal­vador Bene­dicto, where my par­ents have a rest house. We’d have lunch there and show them around the area be­fore head­ing back to Ba­colod for some shop­ping at Ne­gros Show­room. On the way to Si­lay air­port, we’ll visit my old friend Chell Lac­son’s new B&B called Ger­man Un­son Her­itage House (which used to be her grand­mother’s house) for a late me­rienda.

GREAT­EST HOPE FOR THE FU­TURE Our

chil­dren.

IS­SUES AND CAUSES THAT YOU

AD­VO­CATE I’m pas­sion­ate about so­cial jus­tice and wildlife con­ser­va­tion.

WORDS To LIVE By Pay it for­ward.

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