Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017 Candidates

By Michelle Tan 08 August, 2017

Chinoy TV, Miss Chinatown Foundation, and Oriental Group present Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017 in cooperation with co-presenters Solaire Resort and Casino and Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. The pageant officially presented thirty talented hopefuls for this year’s Mr. and Ms. Chinatown pageant at Solaire Eclipse Bar last August 8, 2017.

Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017: New Dynasty

More than finding ambassadors, who possess the Chinoy brand of beauty and excellence, the pageant aims to strengthen the fusion of the Filipino and Chinese culture, as well as the modern and traditional times. More importantly, the pride in the Chinoy heritage. Now on its fourth year, the pageant is once again looking for the next batch of ambassadors, who embody the unified culture of Chinoys.

What sets this year’s pageant apart is the focus on each candidate’s unique #NewDynasty story and advocacy. Apart from that, this year’s search has reached wider grounds as there are six representatives from both Cebu and Davao.  Visit Mr. and Ms. Chinatown’s Facebook page to read more about their stories.

This year’s theme, New Dynasty, aims to focus on Chinoy millennials, who are young, innovative and ready to conquer the world. They pursue their passion while perfectly embodying both Filipino and Chinese values. The #NewDynasty of Chinoys are eager to strive and find their place in the current society more than just by taking over their family business or winning competitions. More than a pageant, it is a movement, which aims to highlight and appreciate the diversity of modern Chinoys. Chinoys who are open, creative, not afraid to try new things, but are all bonded by one thing – their Chinoy roots.

Press Presentation

The event started with the candidates’ opening act wearing Rosenthal Tee’s modern rendition of the traditional cheongsam. Candidates were asked to introduce themselves in both Mandarin and English. After which, any member from the audience can test their wits through the question and answer portion.


The event was hosted by Valerie Tan and Willord Chua and was also graced by reigning Mr. Chinatown 2016, Louie Ngo, who provided his personal tips and words of encouragement to the thirty candidates.

After the successful event and question and answer portion, two candidates were awarded as Darling of the Press 2017. Candidate #15, Joy Tan Wu and Candidate #5, Jacob Munez, both won the hearts of the press as they answered each question.


Pageant Pocket Events

Aside from the coronation night, which is scheduled on September 1 at The Theatre, Solaire, the candidates will be having mini events, which are set to showcase their talent, creativity, and wit. Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017 will have its Cultural Costume Competition on August 13 at Eastwood Central Plaza to showcase both modern and traditional Chinese-Filipino outfits; the first-ever Chinatown Ball on August 16 at Solaire Ballroom to model the breathtaking designs of Chinoy designers; and a Talent Competition on August 20 at The Lucky Chinatown Mall to share their personal skills and talents.

Photo by Larry Uy Leong

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Last modified on Tuesday, 08 August 2017 22:51

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  • Chinatown Ball 2017

    This year's Mr. and Ms. Chinatown pageant won’t settle for anything less as it organized the first ever Chinatown Ball at Solaire Grand Ballroom last Wednesday, August 16. The Ball welcomes its guest to a night of glamour, compassion and sophistication, and allowing them to witness the fusion of two cultures, where classic meets contemporary. The event was created not only to feature the creations of the featured designers, but also to pay tribute to the charity institutions, Filipino-Chinese Home for the Aged and Old Folks House, which will benefit from the event.

    The ball showcased the photo and art exhibit, as well as the music ensemble outside of the ballroom area during the cocktail hour before hosts Nicole Cordoves, Miss Grand International 2016 First Runner-Up, and Tim Yap, TV and radio hosts, welcomed the guest inside the ballroom for the model tableau.


    The program started with welcome remarks from the Board Director of Solaire Resort and Casino, Donato Almeda, Chief Operating Officer of Chinoy TV, Loraine Tan, President of Federation of Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc., Domingo Yap, and Executive Director of Miss Chinatown Foundation, Alexis Go. 


    The fashion runway was filled with beautiful and handsome models, who showcased the designs of our featured Chinoy designers, Jian Lasala, Naomi Ng, Ricky Abad, Ann Ong, Hoseki, Koi Swimwear, Edwin Uy, Popo Go, and Rosenthal Tee.

    Casual Street Chic Collection by Jian Lasala and Naomi Ng


    Swimsuit Collection (Male) by Ricky Abad x Ann Ong

    Swimsuit Collection (Female) by Koi Swimwear x Hoseki

    Formal Chic Collection by Edwin Uy

    New Dynasty Collection by Popo Go and Rosenthal Tee


    Mr. and Ms. Chinatown Candidates Formal Wear

    Special awards, such as the Star of the Night, were also given during the night to honor guests, who have truly embodied what the celebration is about with their look and have shown that they are just as ready to face the #NewDynasty just like the candidates of Mr. and Ms. Chinatown.

    Four candidates were also given special awards by sponsors, Jesi Mendez and Revlon Professional. The official salon partner of Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017, Jesi Mendez, awarded Candidate #13 Patrick Rogando and Candidate #12 Kency Ongkeco, as the new male and female ambassadors of Jesi Mendez, as both candidates showed that they are indeed ready to accept change to become better versions of themselves. 


    The official hair partner, Revlon Professional, also awarded two candidates, Candidates #15 Martin Sy and Joy Wu, as Mr. and Ms. Revlon, as both candidates have shown their beautiful and well-taken care hair despite being exposed to different activities during their journey.


    Aside from the candidates, models, and reigning Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2016, Louie Ngo and Lin Zheng, the night was also completed by the attendance of past winners such as Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2013, Randy See and Rolini Pineda, and Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2014, Kurt Ong and Nicole Cordoves.

    The night was truly one for the books. It was a night worth remembering for the Chinese-Filipino community. It was a night of elegance, culture and charity.



    Photos by Rv Mitra and Larry Leong

  • 5 Chinoy Fashion Designers to Follow

    Contrary to the common stereotypes about Chinoys, the new dynasty of Chinoys have already been tapping their right brain more often to unleash their creative side. Aside from dancers and painters, there are a lot of Chinoys who have excelled in the fashion industry.

    These Chinoys broke the norm by shining in the fashion industry and expressing their idea of beauty through their award-wining works of art. Are you attending a big event soon? Are you planning your own debut? Or are you dying to know the latest trends in the fashion industry? Here are five Chinoy fashion designers that you should follow:

    1. Edwin Uy (@edwinfuy)

    Like most Chinoys, Edwin also studied in Chinese schools and are friends with a lot of Chinoys, who eventually became his regular clients. He has always love oriental inspirations, which he sometimes fused with modern trends to produce his awe-inspiring creations. As a fashion designer, he has already made his mark in the field of bridal and pageantry. Since 2011, he has won countless of awards ranging from Best Designer, Best National Costume and Best Evening Gown for multiple pageants such as the Mutya ng Pilipinas, Binibining Pilipinas, Miss Earth, Miss International, Miss Global, Miss Grand International and Miss World Philippines.

    2. Jian Lasala (@lasala_label)

    Jian’s great grandparents have greatly influenced his Chinoy values. These values taught him to do his best, to be passionate in what he loves to do and to continuously build a greater version of himself. On the aspect of style, he developed the principle of minimalism (“less is more”) and the importance of being elegant than trendy, both of which he has applied in his designs. Jian is the founder and owner of three fashion brands, Lasala Label, Lasala Bridestory and Freetown Connection Clothing. His designs have been highlighted across different Fashion Week in Hong Kong, Phnom Penh, the Philippines, and in International Beauty Pageants such as Miss Universe, Miss Supranational, Miss Intercontinental and Miss Cambodia.

    3. Popo Go (@popogomanila)

    Having both Chinese parents, Popo was raised in a Chinese household and was very much immersed in the Chinoy culture. As a designer, he is known for his eye-catching Swarovski crystal embellishments and bustier-based fitting. His clients are a mix of Chinese and Filipino clients, as well as celebrities including none other than Miss Universe 2015, Pia Wurtzbach, Anne Curtis, Marian Rivera, Lea Salonga, and Kim Chiu, among others. Popo used to join the Philippine Fashion Week from 2007 to 2013 covering both men’s and women’s wear.

    4. Rosenthal Tee (@rosenthaltee)

    The ability to endure and adapt to change are what Rosenthal believes to be culturally rooted in being a modern Chinoy. As a modern Chinoy, she is part of the generation that seeks to honor tradition, while at the same time forging new beginnings of her own. As a designer, she has been creatively expressing these ideas of shifting attitude into her works. Rosenthal has been part of numerous fashion show including the Mercedes Benz Style Show, Metrowear Luxe Show, and the New York Fashion Week.

    5. Naomi Ng (@ngnaomidesigns)

    Naomi’s parents are both from Hong Kong, but she was born and raised here in the Philippines. As a designer, her designs reflect Hong Kong’s contemporary society, which allows designers not to hold back on their creativity and quirk. With this, Naomi aspires to freely express her ideas and create designs while taking in consideration the need for functionality of fashion forward Filipinos. She started her fashion career as an intern under Bang Pineda’s styling team before she started designing for the Fashion Week. At the age of 21, Naomi has already designed numerous pieces for both the Chinese New Year Show and Pilipinas Men’s Fashion Week from 2015-2017. She also designed the winning suit of Mr. Chinatown 2016, Louie Ngo.


    These Chinoy designers are some of the few designers that were chosen to showcase their collection in the upcoming Chinatown Ball at Solaire Grand Ballroom. The event will be attended by VIPs in the Filipino-Chinese community, as well as the thirty candidates of this year’s Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017. What are you waiting for? Follow their social media accounts and watch out for their latest collection.

  • Mr. & Ms. Chinatown 2017: Cultural Costume Competition

    As the pageant nears the scheduled coronation night this coming September 1, the candidates are also getting busier preparing for the mini pocket events, such as the Cultural Costume Competition. The competition was held last Sunday, August 13, at Eastwood Mall, Quezon City. All thirty candidates paraded their elaborate and artistic ensembles, that represent the merging of both Chinese and Filipino cultures, and their interpretation of the New Dynasty.

    The event was hosted by beauty and lifestyle vlogger and TV host, Valeria Tan. Each candidate was given their chance to walk down the runway and project their chosen cultural costume in front of the audience and judges. The judges were comprised of fashion designer, Yuri Dela Luna; personality coach, motivational speaker, actor and director, Manu Respall; administrative manager of Oriental Group, Ron Lim; veteran host and writer in the Filipino-Chinese Theatrical Stage Works, Anthony Tiu; and President and CEO of Richwell Trading Corporation, Myrna Yao.

    Each candidate was judged based on their costume (40%), stage presence (30%), adherence to the Chinese-Filipino culture (20%), and audience impact (10%). Among the thirty candidates, six shall emerge as winners, three for the male category and another three for the female category.

    The top 3 candidates for the male category are the following:

    Candidate #13: Patrick Rogando

    Designed by Patrick Isorena, his battle suit is a combined representation of the Maguindanao’s Moriones festival and the Han Dynasty warrior, accentuated with blue, which symbolizes healing, trust, wisdom, and long life.

    Candidate #3: Justin De Jesus

    Designed by Rei Agustin, Justin’s costume is of a modern Chinese prince, which fits the new dynasty because of its colors.

    Candidate #2: Jonathan Lim

    Few creatures rival the dragon in ferocity, mystery, and scope of fascination than the dragon. Which is why couturier Arnu Camay and costumer Aldo Loquinario have tapped into its power to create Jonathan’s stunning mythological warlord's armor. The costume represents a warrior of intense determination that is as fierce as a dragon, who will fight against intolerance, stereotypes and apathy in the new dynasty.

    The top 3 candidates for the female category are the following: 

    Candidate #11: Conikka Lagamayo

    Designed by Frankie De Leon, Conikka’s costume picks out all the good elements of the Chinese art of painting, with cutouts inspired by a goldfish, a popular motif in the Chinese culture that represents wealth and prosperity. The red color represents happiness and good fortune. Her overall costume was completed with the native Filipino fan, abaniko, as its headpiece.

    Candidate #12: Kency Ongkeco

    Designed by Amir Sali, Kency’s gown represents a shy girl at a glance, but as you get closer to the details, it reveals the transformation from a shy girl to a peacock, which symbolizes the eyes of the stars. The bright colors represent a bright personality, and depending on the light reflection, the gown can transform into an array of different colors.

    Candidate #3: Jillian Chua

    Designed by Edwin Uy, the gold costume symbolizes both the Maranao tribe and Chinese royalty. It also has a touch of red, which symbolizes happiness just like in big Chinese celebrations.

    Aside from this Cultural Costume Competition, the candidate are scheduled to showcase their talents this coming Sunday, August 20, at the Lucky Chinatown Mall. Follow @mrmschinatownph for more updates!


    Photos by RV Mitra and Larry Leong

  • #NewDynasty of Chinoys


    dy·nas·ty \ˈdī-nə-stē

    Whenever we hear the word “dynasty”, we can’t help but tie it with China’s long list of emperors or even with Chinese in general. While we don’t really treat Chinoy families in the Philippines as dynasties, we can’t deny the fact that Chinoys do make up a certain percentage of the Philippine population. Some, such as the taipans and government officials, are even famous enough to shape this country’s economy.

    The word Chinoy itself shows the mixture of both the Chinese and Filipino culture. They grew up in a totally different setting of having to assimilate both cultures and successfully merging it to what they have right now. Most, if not all, have likely learned several languages growing up – Fookien, Mandarin, English and Filipino. They learn Fookien with their parents and Mandarin, English and Filipino from their schools.  Throughout the years, numerous stereotypes have been formed around these Chinoys. People always assume that they are good in math as evidenced by countless of math Olympiads who are Chinoys. If not, people think they are all rich businessmen basing it from Lucio Tan, Henry Sy, George Ty and John Gokongwei. However, things have already been changing.

    These Chinoys are already moving out of stereotypes. They are more than just math Olympiads, tycoons, hardware owners, or businessmen. This new dynasty of Chinoys are also venturing to modeling, media, arts, fashion, and sports. You have the likes of Janeena Chan (TV and Events Host), Valerie Chua (Painter), Christina Dy (Dancer), Rosenthal Tee (Fashion Designer), Chris Tiu (Basketball Player), Gretchen Ho (Former Athlete and TV Host), and of course, Nicole Cordoves, Ms Chinatown 2014 and 1st runner up of Miss Grand International 2016.

    Ladies and gentlemen, we present you the #NewDynasty of Chinoys.

    These Chinoy millennials are young, innovative and ready to conquer the world. They pursue their passion while perfectly embodying both Filipino and Chinese values. The #NewDynasty of Chinoys are eager to strive and find their place in the current society more than just by taking over their family business or winning competitions. They have remarkable stories and goals that are definitely worth looking into.

    That is why the theme of this year’s Mr. and Ms. Chinatown pageant will focus on #NewDynasty. Every year, the pageant is looking for Chinoy ambassadors, who embody the qualities that personify the Chinoy culture and who possess the Chinoy brand of beauty and excellence. More than finding ambassadors, the pageant aims to strengthen the fusion of the Filipino and Chinese Culture, as well as that of the modern and traditional times. It aims to be fresh and inclusive. 

    More than a pageant, we are a movement which aims to highlight and appreciate the diversity of modern Chinoys. Chinoys who are open, creative, not afraid to try new things, but are all bonded by one thing – our Chinoy roots.

    Once again, the pageant is about to introduce the new batch of hopefuls, who are part of this #NewDynasty of Chinoys that are eager to share their stories and advocacy to the Chinoy community.

    Are you part of the #NewDynasty of Chinoys? Share your stories below! Follow @chinoytv and @mrmschinatownph for more updates about the pageant and welcome the rise of the #NewDynasty

  • What to see, eat, or do in five Chinatowns outside Binondo

    Aside from being home to a number of locals with Chinese heritage, Chinatowns are gateways for other ethnic groups to experience and see the everyday Chinese way of life, and to dine and shop everything Chinese. Metro Manila’s own Chinatown, Binondo, is recognized as the oldest one in the world, having been in existence since the mid-1590’s. Binondo, however, is just one of a handful of Chinatowns in the world and is not even the only one in the Philippines as Davao City officially also has one. 

    Although these five Chinatowns, all located in Asia, share the same name/designation, they still offer eats, attractions, or experiences that are unique from one another.


    The best and most convenient way to go Bangkok, Thailand’s Chinatown is by riding the Chao Phraya River boat and getting off at Pier No. 5, Ratchawong. Fares range from 10-20 baht for single journey tickets on the local line (boats with no flags) to 40 baht/journey and 100 baht for all-day passes on the blue-flagged tourist boats. Cruising along the vast Chao Phraya River itself is already a treat but expect to eat local fares and drinks (Thai iced coffee and Thai iced tea) along the streets of Bangkok’s Chinatown upon arrival.

    Bangkok Chao Phraya River Cruise to Chinatown
    Bangkok Chao Phraya River Cruise to Chinatown

    Yaowarat Road and Sam Pheng Lane (700-800 meter walk from Ratchawong Pier) serves as the main arteries of this Chinatown and are the central hubs for shopping (think Divisoria) and street food dining. After buying souvenirs and filling your stomach with food and delicacies in Chinatown, visit nearby Wat Pho (giant reclining Buddha) or Wat Arum (temple of Dawn) across the river for more sightseeing.


    The largest Chinatown in Asia and one of the largest in the world, is a quick 26-minute shinkansen (bullet train) ride from Tokyo Station or 44 minutes if coming from Shinjuku via a combination of the JR Yamanote and Tokaido (shinkansen) lines. Recognized as Japan’s second largest city, one of Yokohama’s best attractions is the Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum that features nine ramen varieties found all over Japan.

    Visit the Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum in Japan's Chinatown, Yokohama.
    Visit the Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum in Japan's Chinatown, Yokohama.

    From Hokkaido’s famous miso-based ramen, Tokyo’s shoyu or soy sauce-based ramen, to Hakata-style tonkotsu (pork-bone broth) ramen, visitors can choose whatever bowl of noodles they want in either full or half servings. The latter option allows diners to hop from one vendor to another to try more than one style. Admission to the museum-cum-theme park is ¥310 for adults and ¥100 for children ages 6-12 years old and senior citizens.


    The island-nation’s Chinatown is easily accessible via the Chinatown station of the Purple/North-East (NE4) or Blue/Downtown (DT19) lines. Pagoda Street serves as the main avenue of sights and shops including the Chinatown Heritage Center and a night market. True to Singapore’s harmonious mixing of cultures, races, and religions, there is a Hindu temple (Sri Mariamman) and Muslim mosque (Masjid Jamae Chulia) at the end of Pagoda Street.

    Singapore's Chinatown is easily accessible via the Purple (NE4)/Blue (DT19) MRT lines.
    Singapore's Chinatown is easily accessible via the Purple (NE4)/Blue (DT19) MRT lines.

    In case you were wondering where to eat, Chinatown Food Complex along Smith Street offers various Chinese, Indian, and Malay fares including the world’s cheapest Michelin starred hawker stall, Hong Kong Soya Chicken Rice & Noodle of Chan Hon Meng that sells soy sauce chicken-based dishes from S$2-3. Expect long lines throughout its 10:30AM-7:00PM (Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays) and 8:30AM-7:00PM (Saturdays and Sundays) operating schedules.


    Davao City, the Philippines’ largest city in terms on land area, also boasts of its own Chinatown, albeit being a few centuries younger than Binondo. Established in 2003 through an executive order from then-mayor Rodrigo Duterte, Davao City’s Chinatown is bounded by Santa Ana Avenue, Ramon Magsaysay Avenue, and Leon Garcia Street where the Arch of Friendship welcomes everyone to the main community of Chinoys in Mindanao. 

    Unlike Binondo’s standalone shops and stalls, multi-story malls dominate Davao City’s Chinatown - NCCC, Chinatown Shopping Center, Yahu! Plaza and even the DCLA Plaza and Gaisano Mall of Davao located along Chinatown’s fringes. Must buys along this Chinatown’s streets include fresh fruits like durian and mangosteen (dubbed king and queen of fruits, respectively). The area does lacks quality Chinese restaurants as most are located in neighboring towns.

    Jalan Petaling, Kuala Lumpur

    Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia centers around one stretch of road: Jalan Petaling or Petaling Street. Accessible via the Pasar Seni (KJ14) station of the rapidKL LRT Kelana Jaya Line, Jalan Petaling has dining and shopping stalls on both sides of the street and even features a meters-long high roof/ceiling to protect visitors from either direct sunlight or rain. 

    Aside from cafes and restaurants offering Chinese fares like Hokkien mee, Hainanese chicken rice, and char kway teow, expect to find establishments serving Malay fares along Pataling Street. Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown is also a good option for booking cheap accommodations as the neighborhood offers more than 100 options ranging from backpacker rooms to three and four-star hotels.

    Other equally famous and bustling Chinatowns globally include ones in San Francisco in the United States, Vancouver and Toronto in Canada, and Melbourne in Australia. Each one promises one or more features that our very own Binondo is known for: delicious Chinese eats, affordable shopping, and seeing a slice of the Chinese/Chinoy way of life.

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