Bench is Born
The brand opens and takes up a small part of what was then known as Shoemart Makati, selling classically understated men’s T-shirts.
1988 Bench Boutique
The first of many stores is opened in Park Square, and there are larger-than-life displays and posters of firstever Bench image model Richard Gomez on every wall and in every window.
1991 “A DAY in A Sculler’s life”
The now iconic commercial featured Richard Gomez in a Bench tank top, rowing across Taal Lake. At the time, celebrity endorsers and fashion brands rarely went together in the Philippine context— but it went on to win awards and is fondly remembered to this day.
1994 Global expansion
In 1994, Bench opens its first franchise outlet in AlKhobar, Saudi Arabia. The following years would see further expansion across Asia, the Middle East and the United States, including Kuwait in 1995; United Arab Emirates, Dubai and Abu Dhabi in 2004; Bench Serramonte in Daly City in 2005; Myanmar in 2016; and Japan and Bahrain in 2017.
2000 Brief encounters
The avant-garde underwear show, now a Bench staple that’s one of the most anticipated events of the brand, draws a crowd that’s 25,000 strong and becomes the most-talked about fashion show in Philippine history.
2001 Pinoy POP Culture
Bench first dips its toes into the world of publishing with this tome that celebrates the best Pinoy culture has to offer, put together by Gilda Corderofernando and Manny Chavez. Thus begins a message that the brand still strongly advocates today: #Lovelocal.
Bench starts conquering other markets and expanding its brand, starting with the opening of the first Bench Fix Salon. Now Bench fans can really look good from head to toe.
2002 Bench goes to China
Bench sets about conquering the biggest market in the world and catering worldclass sensibilities with the launch of its flagship store in Shanghai. Ben Chan gathered a creative team from China, Japan and Singapore to work with the country’s best to ensure only the best of first impressions.
The first Bench Body store opens in Glorietta, putting the brand’s underwear—along with fragrances—front and center.
2003 dao shall wear Bench
The Love Ko Bench campaign starring F4’s Jerry Yan is launched. Jerry went to Malacañang for a courtesy call with thenpresident Gloria Macapagalarroyo and gamely did fan meets in Manila and Cebu that basically reached the height of Beatlemania.
2004 one night only in shanghai
Bench holds its first underwear show outside the country, featuring Filipino celebrities Francine Prieto and Jon Hall, as well as international endorser Lu Yan.
Bench is Forever
The brand’s slogan is introduced with a campaign that features National Artist Benedicto “Bencab” Cabrera, Gina de Venecia, and of course, Richard Gomez. By showcasing faces from different fields and different generations, Bench called forth a timelessness and transcendence that rings true for its versatility.
The Bench Artefacts from 1987 onwards
An exhibit at this year’s Art Fair Philippines that honored the brand’s extenstive cultural and material history, featuring the scull from “A Day in a Sculler’s Life,” hangers and pencils straight from Bench stores of yesteryear, original black and white transparencies of iconic Bench ads and more.
Bench fashion week
Insiders and influencers got a first look at what’s next for the Philippine retail giant during the first Bench Fashion Week, held in March, featuring previews for new collections from Bench, Human and Kashieca, as well as three global partner brands: American Eagle Outfitters, Cotton On and Vero Moda. The second was held in September.
Bench design Awards
Announced in March, the Bench Design Awards sought out 10 fresh, undiscovered talents of local fashion—and those who stood out presented their collections in September at Bench Fashion Week.
shows AT INTERNATIONAL fashion weeks
Bench Body presented its Men’s S/S 2018 collection at New York Fashion Week in July, and Bench presented its S/S 2018 collection at Tokyo Fashion Week in October.
more INTERNATIONAL endorsers
Bench ads and billboards were graced by a number of retroactively recognizable faces, from hunky Math teacher Pietro Boselli and South Korean actress Park Shin-hye to model du jour Brooklyn Beckham and internet boyfriend Cole Sprouse.
Under The stars
Of course there’s going to be a party—and it’s set to be the biggest one yet. Dare you miss out? The festivities take place at the Mall of Asia Arena on November 18.