Town & Country (Philippines) - - CONTENTS / AUGUST - By ali­cia Colby sy and Wil­liam Batchelor

Con­ver­sa­tion starters from A-Z for din­ner with friends and dec­o­ra­tors, from plan­ning a power pow­der room to map­ping the new world tour.


only good things can hap­pen when Philip­pine na­tional Artist Ben­Cab and moooi Car­pets, a di­vi­sion of the moooi brand founded by dutch de­sign su­per­star mar­cel wan­ders, get to­gether. moooi, rep­re­sented lo­cally by Abitare in­ter­na­tionale, ap­proached Ben­Cab to par­tic­i­pate in this spe­cial project to mark its 20th an­niver­sary. Hav­ing cel­e­brated 50 years of his own cre­ative out­put in 2015, Ben­Cab drew from his ex­ist­ing body of work and chose from his iconic sa­bel and Larawan se­ries that, he felt, “some­how came nat­u­rally,” and were the “best fit for the medium.” The Ben­Cab + moooi Car­pets col­lab­o­ra­tion is a col­lec­tion of eight lim­ited edi­tion art­works ex­e­cuted with only eight pieces per de­sign. Abitare In­ter­nazionale, Crown Tower, 107 H.V. dela Costa Street, Sal­cedo Vil­lage, Makati, 892.1889.


At Man­hat­tan’s Baccarat Ho­tel, which han­dles $100,000 worth of crys­tal a day, the task of clean­ing falls to four “glass at­ten­dants.” If you’re more into DIY, fol­low the maker’s in­struc­tions: fine crys­tal can be cleaned in the dish­washer, but it re­quires high-al­ka­line de­ter­gent, 138°f wa­ter for wash­ing, and 183°f for rins­ing. Af­ter­ward, wipe with a pure cot­ton cloth, then hold up to the light to en­sure that there are no spots. And re­peat. Open­ing soon at Shangri-La at The Fort, 30th Street cor­ner 5th Av­enue, Boni­fa­cio Global City.


With an em­pha­sis on tra­di­tion and ele­gance, con­tem­po­rary fur­ni­ture maker Poltrona frau in­tro­duces its plush Chester Line sofa. The three-piece couch can be con­fig­ured in a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ways to fit any liv­ing space. Tufted Pelle frau leather up­hol­stery can be mixed and matched with the Poltrona frau fab­rics for the goose down cush­ion. Furnitalia, Cres­cent Park West, 30th Street cor­ner Rizal Drive, Boni­fa­cio Global City, 819.1887.

D De­sign for gooD in the WorLD of de­sIgn, tWo CoM­PA­nies anchor theIr val­ues on hu­MAn­ity AnD the en­vI­ron­ment. SO­CIAL pEr­SpEC­tIvE

on his web­site, Bel­gian de­signer sep Ver­boom ( ex­plains his cho­sen han­dle, Boomin sep. in his na­tive tongue, “boom in” means “to do things dif­fer­ently, with­out re­stric­tions.” Ver­boom has cer­tainly been try­ing to live up to that. for his post­grad­u­ate the­sis on sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment, Ver­boom spent six months in Cebu in 2012. in the south­ern prov­ince, he ini­ti­ated two projects. Ver­boom worked with the ship­yard com­mu­ni­ties to teach them how to gather, clean, and pre­pare dis­carded ropes for re­use. The Bel­gian also ex­plored the prov­ince’s junk­yards to de­velop a line of small fur­ni­ture and light­ing fix­tures made with re­cy­cled elec­tric fan grills.

since then, Ver­boom’s grow­ing port­fo­lio dis­plays his ex­pan­sive range in terms of the ma­te­ri­als he uses and the prod­ucts he cre­ates. The elec­tric fan grills have been used for a line of lamps, mir­rors, stools, and trays. The ropes de­buted at salone del Mo­bile in its rein­car­na­tion as hand-wo­ven car­pets, a col­lab­o­ra­tive project with Bel­gian brand Papilio. The same ropes are part of a mes­mer­iz­ing col­lec­tion of mir­rors, still await­ing mass pro­duc­tion.

While he has gained mul­ti­ple ac­co­lades and ex­ten­sive me­dia play abroad, it is ironic that his prod­ucts are not widely known or sold in the Philip­pines. There are plans of launch­ing some of his col­lec­tions, and hope­fully that comes to fruition soon. Ver­boom has given so much to Philip­pine com­mu­ni­ties. Per­haps it is time for us to re­turn the fa­vor.


in­ter­face is the world’s big­gest man­u­fac­turer of car­pet tiles. Through the years, the com­pany has re­fined its vi­sion to in­clude not just sus­tain­abil­ity, but also the em­pow­er­ment of com­mu­ni­ties. “By 2011, in­ter­face was us­ing yarn de­rived from com­mer­cial fish­ing nets made by our yarn sup­plier, Aquafil. Think­ing that ar­ti­sanal fish­ing com­mu­ni­ties might be an un­tapped source of nets and see­ing the op­por­tu­nity to do this in a way that could em­power com­mu­ni­ties led to in­ter­face re­new­ing its in­ter­est in cre­at­ing an in­clu­sive busi­ness sup­ply chain,” Jon Khoo, in­ter­face’s in­no­va­tion part­ner, ex­plains.

The idea was fur­ther ex­plored through meet­ings with marine con­ser­va­tion­ists and poly­mer ex­perts, and net-works was born out of this, a joint ven­ture be­tween in­ter­face and the Zoo­log­i­cal so­ci­ety of Lon­don. At the core of this project is ny­lon 6, a ma­te­rial widely used in the pro­duc­tion of fish­ing nets which, ac­cord­ing to Khoo, is “ex­actly the same ma­te­rial that we use in on our prod­ucts—it’s very durable, al­lows for great de­sign, and is re­cy­clable.”

in­ter­face and net-work searched for the per­fect site for its pi­lot project—a coun­try with, Khoo ex­plains, “sig­nif­i­cant marine plas­tic waste is­sue, had fish­ing com­mu­ni­ties that we felt we could em­power through ac­cess to fi­nance, and where ZsL felt there were marine con­ser­va­tion chal­lenges that net-Works could help tackle.” Dana­jon Bank in Cebu fit the bill with its plas­tic waste and poor fish­ing com­mu­ni­ties. Also, there was an op­por­tu­nity to pro­tect the nat­u­ral sur­round­ings, with its man­groves and coral reefs threat­ened by global warm­ing and over-de­vel­op­ment.

start­ing in 2012, the area’s com­mu­ni­ties have been col­lect­ing dis­carded and end-of-life fish­ing nets which are cleaned, packed, and shipped to Aquafil in italy for re­cy­cling. net-works set up their own banks run by com­mu­nity mem­bers. “The banks are sim­i­lar to co-op­er­a­tives, a model fo­cused on fi­nan­cial in­clu­sion,” Khoo said. Through the banks, the com­mu­ni­ties can open their own ac­counts and even take out small loans. net-works has now ex­panded to Ban­tayan, also in Cebu, as well as coastal vil­lages in iloilo. Cameroon was re­cently added to its list of project sites. in the com­ing years, in­ter­face, to­gether with net-works, aims to spread a new cor­po­rate gospel an­chored on the val­ues of sus­tain­abil­ity, en­vi­ron­men­tal ac­tivism, and in­clu­siv­ity. In­ter­ DEvI DE vEyrA


The Mogul writ­ing desk by giorgetti is metic­u­lously crafted from solid wal­nut canaletto wood and equipped with leather and glass in­serts. The syn­ergy be­tween the desk and the baron arm­chair serves as the per­fect work­ing en­vi­ron­ment for any ex­ec­u­tive. The desk chair can ei­ther be fixed or have a swivel seat. it is also avail­able with four legs or with a five-wheel re­volv­ing base. Furnitalia.


Ev­ery­one knows what’s hap­pen­ing in the Philip­pines right now. great de­sign! (What were you think­ing about?) For those who haven’t made the trek to Manila, here are three ar­ti­sans to watch. Fur­ni­ture de­signer ito Kish launched his epony­mous col­lec­tion in 2012. The


a mod­ern it­er­a­tion of a clas­sic vin­tage style, the af­tereight chair by Natuzzi adds a sense of com­fort, warmth, and calm to any room. avail­able in fab­ric up­hol­stery and leather, the chair is a chameleon of sorts, tak­ing on dis­tinct per­son­al­i­ties in ev­ery dif­fer­ent ex­e­cu­tion. MOS De­sign, Boni­fa­cio High Street, Boni­fa­cio Global City, Taguig, 856.2789. basil­isa bench (above) high­lights Philip­pine form, fea­tur­ing five unique rat­tan weaves from var­i­ous re­gions around the ar­chi­pel­ago. t’nalak is an indige­nous wo­ven tex­tile made from abaca fibers that is hand­crafted by the women of the t’boli tribe in the south­ern Philip­pines us­ing a cen­turies-old tech­nique. The tra­di­tional col­or­way is red, black, and cream, though Hol­land & sherry of­fers the weave in pop­pier shades. Jewelmer, founded by a French pearl farmer and a Philip­pine busi­ness­man in 1979, is the world’s largest pro­ducer of the golden south sea pearl (also known as the Philip­pine pearl). While its sought-af­ter pieces mix high jew­elry tech­niques with Filipino artistry, the com­pany’s work on pro­tect­ing and con­serv­ing Philip­pine coastal com­mu­ni­ties is what puts it a cut above.


From botan­i­cal green Foo Dog porce­lain jars in their tra­di­tional clas­sic form to mood light­ing such as the el­e­gant Madylin glass lamp and the Yla pen­dant light with its an­tiqued brass hard­ware and enamel cover, green is the way to go at Ethan Allen to add a new di­men­sion to your home. Fo­cus Global, Twenty-Four Seven McKin­ley Build­ing, 24th Street cor­ner 7th Av­enue McKin­ley Park­way, Boni­fa­cio Global City, 705.9999.


It should come as no sur­prise that good de­sign is where it’s at in a cos­mopoli­tan cen­ter like Hong Kong. Set to open in late 2017, the Mur­ray Build­ing, one of the city’s em­blem­atic land­marks and de­signed by Bri­tish mod­ernist Ron Phillips, will be trans­formed by Fos­ter + Part­ners into an lux­ury ho­tel, The Mur­ray, and will be op­er­ated by Nic­colo Ho­tels. “With the Mur­ray Build­ing—an out­stand­ing ex­am­ple of 1970s Hong Kong ar­chi­tec­ture—we have been able to re­con­nect an im­por­tant civic land­mark with the city,” says Luke Fox, se­nior ex­ec­u­tive part­ner and head of stu­dio at Fos­ter + Part­ners. “This project draws on key ar­eas of our ex­per­tise in ur­ban­ism, ar­chi­tec­ture, and in­te­ri­ors, and our de­sign will breathe new life into this clas­sic Hong Kong build­ing by cre­at­ing a unique ho­tel and leisure des­ti­na­tion for in­ter­na­tional visi­tors and lo­cals to en­joy.”

High de­sign can also be found at the Miche­lin-rated Tate Din­ing Room and Bar. Owned and op­er­ated by Vicky Lau, Asia’s Best Fe­male Chef for 2015 as awarded by S. Pel­le­grino, the space was given new life by Filipino ar­chi­tect J.J. Acuña. Lo­cated in the foodie neigh­bor­hood of She­ung Wan, the over­all at­mos­phere is cre­ated from a pal­ette of whites, nudes, and pinks, mixed with brass and greens.


fon­tana Arte draws upon its ar­chives and re­leases up­dated ver­sions of 20th cen­tury light­ing clas­sics. Lucem, Clipp Cen­ter, 11th Av­enue cor­ner 39th Street, Boni­fa­cio Global City.


Ital­ian ar­chi­tect and de­signer An­to­nio Citterio con­tin­ues his work with b&b Italia in this lat­est col­lec­tion of mod­ern chairs. Jens was in­flu­enced by the clas­sic de­signs of Chi­nese fur­ni­ture dat­ing back to the Ming Dy­nasty. The col­lec­tion of chairs is lauded for the el­e­gant blend of wood and black leather. Fo­cus Global.


to­gether with amer­i­can de­signer Ken Fulk, de Gournay, the Bri­tish dec­o­ra­tive com­pany spe­cial­iz­ing in cus­tom wall cov­er­ings, fab­ric, and porce­lain, re­cently cre­ated a cus­tom wall­pa­per for the Kips Bay dec­o­ra­tor show house in New york City ear­lier this year, com­bin­ing land­scapes from two of de Gournay’s scenic lay­outs L’Eden and English Land­scape with a menagerie of an­i­mals from the city’s zoo. Based on a fic­tional tale imag­ined by Fulk, “Madame’s Mag­i­cal Menagerie,” is filled with ex­otic an­i­mals that have es­caped from a nearby zoo and have found a new home in the Madame’s lush back­yard, pro­vid­ing en­ter­tain­ment for her lav­ish and much talked about din­ner par­ties. The hand­painted pan­els with their care­fully de­picted scenes con­jure up a stylish fan­tasy world of a time gone by. El­e­ments Fine Fur­nish­ing Fab­rics, 2322 Chino Ro­ces Av­enue, Makati, 889.8872.


Look Up With its cre­ative, con­tem­po­rary de­signs, Barovier & toso is giv­ing more rea­son to cre­ate height­ened fo­cal points in ev­ery room.

GrEAt­ESt hItS Among Ben­cab’s most fa­mous works are paint­ings from his Sa­bel and Larawan se­ries. t&c


bACCArAt MEMoirE sEr­vicE sEt, baccarat.coM

NEwS­wOr­thy pIECES From top: hOL­LAND & ShErry Fab­ric, hol­land and­sh­; ItO kISh bench, itok­; JEwELmEr pearl bracelet,

NAt­u­rAL SE­LEC­tION From top: Foo Dog jars, Madylin ta­ble lamps, and wyla hood pen­dant lamp from Ethan Allen.


truLy COS­MOpOLI­tAN Clock­wise: Ar­chi­tec­tural ren­der­ings of the Mur­ray Build­ing façade, bath­room, and lobby. Be­low: the tate Din­ing room and Bar.


1. Bilia by Gio ponti, 1932 2. Giova by Gae Au­lenti, 1964 3. Lu­mi­na­tor by pi­etro Chiesa, 1932 4. Naska, his­tor­i­cal Archive Fon­tana Arte, 1933 5. Nobi by Metis Light­ing, 1992 6. uovo, his­tor­i­cal Archive Fon­tana Arte, 1972 4

6 5




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