The Making of the First Wallpaper* City Guide Manila

Manila as Best City- Wallpaper Design Awards 2015
Our very own MANILA was nominated as Best City at the 2015 Wallpaper* Design Awards. Other nominees were: Paris, Tokyo, Hamburg and Chicago.

I almost fell off my chair when I saw that Manila was nominated for BEST CITY at the 2015 Wallpaper* Design Awards. As you may have heard from Coconuts Manila, The Gypsetters, Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer, The Wanderlister, Heart 2 Heart Online, Buddha Banana, Koji ArsuaHola Philippines and Spot, the first ever Wallpaper* City Guide for Manila was published last November 2014 under the UK-based Phaidon Press, with myself as author and Hong Kong-based editor Kissa Castaneda-McDermott as contributor.

I am often asked how this project came to be. And well, in a nutshell, one evening last December 2013, I received an email from Jeremy Case, executive editor of Wallpaper* City Guides (Phaidon Press UK). He said he had been looking for a  journalist with a keen eye for aesthetics and came across my blog, www.cheryltiu.com, (yes, THIS BLOG!!! *kilig*) and asked if I would like to be a part of the first Manila edition that they were producing! I almost fell over! I even had to double check that it wasn’t spam, haha! 

Jeremy came to Manila in January 2014, and I took him to some of the places I had in mind for the book, and he was impressed! But… we only had ONE month to put the entire book together! And that’s everything from shortlisting to contacting to researching to interviewing to ocular-ing to shooting to writing to editing…  I basically had no life from March-April 2014! (A big thank you to my family and friends for understanding that I couldn’t see them then!)

I posted this on my Facebook and Instagram last January 11, 2014: "Welcome to the Philippines, Wallpaper* City Guide editor Jeremy Case!!! We are collaborating on something super exciting that will put MANILA on the global scale, especially in terms of design and architecture. Really thankful and blessed for this opportunity!  Look out for it later this year!"
I posted this on my Facebook and Instagram last January 11, 2014: “Welcome to the Philippines, Wallpaper* City Guide editor Jeremy Case!!! We are collaborating on something super exciting that will put MANILA on the global scale, especially in terms of design and architecture. Really thankful and blessed for this opportunity! Look out for it later this year!”

Well, now, the product is finished! After over 2 milliion copies sold and 100++ cities featured, Manila is now officially part of the Wallpaper* City Guide family! French lensman Pierre-Emmanuel Michel flew to the Philippines to photograph everything in just two weeks! I want to make clear though that as Wallpaper* City Guides are really catered to the design-conscious traveler—  interior design and architecture were the focal points, rather than, say, how great the food in a featured restaurant is. Also, even though Makati and Bonifacio Global City are the most progressive cities at the moment, we also wanted make sure the rest of the capital was represented, so we have places in Manila, Pasig, Quezon City, etc. Also, with the exception of a few hotels and resorts, everything featured in the book is completely Pinoy and homegrown

Frenchman Pierre-Emmanuel Michel flew into the country to photograph all the venues for Wallpaper* City Guide Manila! Here he is shooting our city from the 63rd floor of Discovery Primea.
Frenchman Pierre-Emmanuel Michel flew into the country to photograph all the venues for Wallpaper* City Guide Manila! Here he is shooting our city 250 meters (820.2 feet) above the ground from the 63rd floor of Discovery Primea.

So yes, we were nominated as BEST CITY at the 2015 Wallpaper* Design Awards— which is a HUGE deal. First of all, it’s such a prestigious body for design and architecture, and secondly, we were up against countries like Paris, Tokyo, Hamburg and Chicago! (It was just announced that Tokyo won, but hey, the fact that Manila, for the first time ever, was listed alongside such stalwarts is an indicator that our country is really going places!)

We celebrated with parties in the Philippines and Hong Kong! I was really touched at the tremendous amount of support that Pinoys around the world have extended towards this book. I hope that this guide will help put our underrated capital on the world map, really! To be frank, the pictures painted of the Philippines and especially of Manila in international news outlets aren’t the most enticing. At the same time, most people who come and visit the Philippines are more excited about the beaches so Manila becomes just a quick stopover for them before their next flight– so I hope we’ve given them enough reason to stay a little longer. :)

In the Philippines, Wallpaper* City Guide Manila is available at all Fully Booked brances, Grace Park in Rockwell, and Heima at LRI Design Plaza in Makati and at The Brixton Building, Kapitolyo, Pasig. It is also available at bookstores around the world; online at Amazon, Penguin and various websites; and can be downloaded as an app on iTunes

Wallpaper City Guide Manila
The Wallpaper* City Guide for Manila is available in the Philippines at Fully Booked, and in bookstores around the world. It can also be downloaded as an app on iTunes.
The Wallpaper* City Guide for Manila is currently #4 on the Best Sellers List of Fully Booked, whoohoo! Right behind Neil Patrick Harris, Oprah and Dodinksy! :)
The Wallpaper* City Guide for Manila is currently #4 on the Best Sellers List of Fully Booked, whoohoo! Right behind Neil Patrick Harris, Oprah and Dodinksy! :)

MANILA LAUNCH PARTY

WHEN: November 28, 2014

WHERE: Manifesto Gallerie, Clipp Building, Bonifacio Global City

FOOD: Chef J. Luis Gonzalez of Vask and Arrozeria (Beer Nitrogen Ice Cream, Shrimp “Isaw,” Paella Valenciana, and Black Fideua with Octopus and Calamari)

BEVERAGES:  AWC Philippines (Anna de Codorniu Blanc de Blancs, Viña Pomal Blanco 2012 and Viña Pomal Blanco 2011) and Don Papa Rum (Kapag Serious Ka, Coco Breeze and Don Papa Old Fashioned cocktails) 

Wallpaper City Guide Manila Launch Party Invitation- November 28, 2014 Friday
Invitation to the Manila party, designed by Carlo Calma
The Wallpaper City Guide Manila Party was held at the Manifesto Gallerie at Clipp Center
The Wallpaper City Guide Manila Party was held at the Manifesto Gallerie at Clipp Center with Carlo Calma’s “Obsession and Fetishes” exhibit as the backdrop
Cheryl Tiu and Kissa Castaneda-McDermott
Me and Kissa at out book-signing area :)
Wallpaper City Guide Manila Party- Hayden Kho, Teresa Herrera-Anthony, Sony Angara
Hayden Kho, Teresa Herrea-Anthony, Senator Sonny Angara
Charles Tiu, Victor Basa, Uri Singla, Dani Aliaga
Charles Tiu, Victor Basa, Uri Singla, Dani Aliaga
Chef Carla Brigliadori of Casa Artusi, Margarita Fores, Chele Gonzalez of Vask, Mielle Esteban of Arum Madrid Fusion
Chef Carla Brigliadori of Casa Artusi, Margarita Fores, J. Luis “Chele” Gonzalez of Vask, Mielle Esteban of Arum Madrid Fusion
Jackie Antonio, Janthina Fong, Marco Antonio, Indy Villalon
Jackie Cohen-Antonio, Janthina Fong, Marco Antonio, Indy Villalon
Chicken Isaw by J. Luis Gonzalez of Vask
Chicken “Isaw” by Chef J. Luis Gonzalez of Vask
Black Fideua with Octopus and Calamari by Chef J. Luis Chele Gonzalez of Arrozeria, Century City Mall
Black Fideua with Octopus and Calamari by Chef J. Luis “Chele” Gonzalez of Arrozeria, which is opening this month at Century City Mall
Marco Lobregat, Rosanna Ocampo-Rodriguez, Leo Po
Marco Lobregat, Rosanna Ocampo-Rodriguez, Leo Po
Jessica Wilson, Raymond Gutierrez, Mortitz Gastl, Nix Alanon, Dong Ronquillo, Rajo Laurel
Jessica Wilson, Raymond Gutierrez, Mortitz Gastl, Nix Alanon, Dong Ronquillo, Rajo Laurel
Sandra Miloda and Jessica Kienle
Sandra Miloda and Jessica Kienle. Jess is our featured Insider for the Wallpaper* City Guide Manila!
Jin Perez, Sara Black, Chris Yam-Daez, Marielle Santos-Po
One Mega Group VP Archie Carrasco and Folded & Hung's Ronald Pineda
Folded & Hung’s Ronald Pineda and One Mega Group VP Archie Carrasco
Florence and Alexis Ko
FURNItalia’s Florence and Alexis Ko
Tim Yap, Cheryl Tiu, Apl.de.Ap
Whoa, I was so starstruck and happy that Apl.de.Ap of Black Eyed Peas came to celebrate with us! Whoohoo!
The team behind the Wallpaper City Guide Manila Launch- architect Carlo Calma, contributor Kissa Castaneda McDermott, author Cheryl Tiu, Fully Booked owner Chris Daez, eventologist Tim Yap
The team behind the Wallpaper City Guide Manila Launch- architect Carlo Calma, contributor Kissa Castaneda McDermott, author Cheryl Tiu, Fully Booked owner Chris Daez, eventologist Tim Yap. We only sat down to meet once, and then planned this entire party via Whatsapp! Love these guys! <3

HONG KONG LAUNCH PARTY

WHEN: November 15, 2014

WHERE: Chino, Kennedy Town

FOOD: Chef Erik Idos of Chino (Chicharrones & Chips, Assorted Salsas, Bistek Salad, Chicken Adobo Tacos, Pork Neck BBQ, Crispy Garlic Fried Rice, Fried Banana Spring Rolls)

BEVERAGES: Gonzalez Byass (Villarnau Cava Brut and Beronia Crianza 2011, distributed in Hong Kong by Amorosso, and in the Philippines by Barcino)

Fall Merienda Club Invitation and Menu designed by noted Hong Kong-based architect and blogger JJ Acuna aka The Wanderlister
Invitation to the Hong Kong party designed by JJ Acuna aka The Wanderlister
Wallpaper City Guide Manila at Chino Kennedy Town Hong Kong
The Fall Merienda Club to celebrate the Wallpaper* City Guide Manila was held at the newly opened Chino in Kennedy Town
For the Wallpaper City Guide Launch, Chino chef Erik Idos created Pinoy specials for specifically for the event
While Chino normally serves Mexican fare, for the event, Chef Erik Idos, formerly of Nobu Hong Kong, crated Pinoy specials
Beronia and Villarnau- Wine Sponsors for Wallpaper City Guide Manila Party in Hong Kong
Villarnau Cava and Beronia Crianza flowed freely for our guests
The organizers of the Wallpaper City Guide Manila Party in Hong Kong- Kissa Castaneda, Cheryl Tiu, Teresa Tayzon, JJ Acuna
The Wallpaper* City Guide Manila launch in Hong Kong was hosted by these Pinoys who are shaking up the city! Kissa Castaneda-McDermott is the editor of Home Journal under Edipresse Group; Teresa Liwanag heads the marketing of Puma; and JJ Acuna aka The Wanderlister is a noted architect, designer and blogger. Kudos guys!
Maison Kitsune founder Masaya Kuroki, Fed Tan, Rafe Totengco
Maison Kitsune founder Masaya Kuroki, “Mayor of Hong Kong” Fed Tan and THE Rafe Totengco! So happy Rafe, who’s based in New York, came to celebrate with us! He’s an incredible source of Pinoy pride!
Rex Agudado, managing editor of The Peak, Chef Erik Idos of Chino, Cathy Chon, founder Catch On Media and her kids
More Pinoy movers & shakers in Hong Kong! Rex Agudado, managing editor of The Peak, Chef Erik Idos of Chino, Cathy Chon, founder Catch On Media and her kids
Wallpaper City Guide Manila Party at Chino in Kennedy Town, Hong Kong
Chino was such a hip venue for the Hong Kong launch! Kennedy Town is awesome.

 

4 Comments

  1. Pretty amazing, Cher! Love how you mentioned how this all came together — the universe definitely made things happen: you were ready for this, and Manila as a design and architecture mecca, was ready. Congrats on such an achievement, and for pioneering such an amazing project/guide!! Will def rush to get my own copy. Cheers!

    • Hi Charley! Thank you so much for your comment! Means alot coming from you :) Excited about where our country is going, too, finally!!! :) xx

  2. It’s great to see our city being noticed as a style and design hub by Wallpaper nevertheless. Congratulations :)

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