Leica Store Philippines turns one

It is a month of triple celebrations for the premium German brand, Leica Camera in the Philippines.
In celebration of its first anniversary, Leica Store Philippines also launched its new photo gallery and the new Leica SL camera. It was the same time last year when Leica Camera, the legendary German camera and sport optics manufacturer with over 160 years of heritage, opened its doors in Manila, Philippines. Since then, cameras that are designed after its founder Oskar Barnack’s philosophy of versatility, excellence and picture quality have become accessible to Filipino photo journalists, hobbyists and enthusiasts alike.

“We believe that there’s more than meets the eye. There are stories and certain types of beauty that can only be recognized once they’re zoomed in or viewed from the lens—and it is what constantly drives Leica to innovate,” said Ivan Yao, Managing Director of Lucerne. “We are very happy to share this passion in photography with the Filipinos and being in Manila for a year now is indeed a great milestone,” he added.

Managing Director of Leica Camera Asia Pacific, Sunil Kaul says, “101 years of photographic history at Leica stands for generations of scientists and precision engineers who were never satisfied with anything that was only just tolerable. It had to be the best. German precision engineering and a worldwide ambassador for ‘Made in Germany’, Leica cameras attained the status of coveted collectors pieces and status symbols. I send only my best congratulations to Lucerne on an excellent job in providing a destination for photography enthusiasts to exchange and share their stores.
To celebrate the first year anniversary of Leica Store Philippines, the company proudly unveils the Leica Gallery. For the initial salvo, the gallery will feature Fade Into Light— a travel photography series by AP Murillo and Raul Echivarre, that perfectly captures the act of gathering fish in Currimao, Ilocos Norte.

Taking the celebration of art and photography to greater heights, the event will also coincide with the launch of the new LEICA SL. A mirrorless system camera that sets new standards in terms of speed, picture quality and versatility.

The vision behind Fade Into Light

Memories can be written or photographed, but not all are preserved for eternity. Some are ignored or often unnoticed, such as the seemingly mundane act of fishing using a net called Daklis— a long narrow, floating net mean to sieve the shallows for fish.

After chancing upon this activity in 2008, AP Murillo and Raul Echivarre have chosen to bring life to this overlooked subject through photography. Five years later, the works of these two photographers converge to form a series of hidden gems that a passing eye would have never caught.

About Fade Into Light

The title refers to a series of professions that are slowly waning into irrelevance. The first act of the exhibit focuses the spotlight on the heroic fishermen who want to give their children an entirely different future—something that no longer involves nets and long days in the sea.

Fade Into Light is a body of work that chooses to celebrate the beauty of an honest day’s work. It is a nod to the hard workers who have one way or another been part of a chain that has brought food to our table; and who are now in the process of embracing new tomorrows along with the demands of time.

Photography for a cause

Helping the residents of Currimao, Ilocos Norte prepare for a brighter future ahead, Leica Gallery’s Fade Into Light will have the artists sell their masterpiece for a cause. Proceeds will support the education of the fishermen’s children through the non-profit organization, Sitio Remedios Heritage Corporation.

A survey conducted in the said barangay showed that only 5% of the population afforded to go to college. To boost this figure, Sitio Remedios Heritage Corporation currently subsidizes the education of 25 and nine of them will graduate from college this academic year.

Funds that sustain this vision come from the operations of Sitio Remedios, a small bed and breakfast destination by the shores of the west Philippine Sea. Through this establishment, fisher folk and their wives also get to learn some housekeeping and hospitality skills.
Leica Camera on capturing the unforgettable moments

Creative director AP Murillo and management consultant Raul Echivarre, who are both members of the Camera Club of the Philippines, found the Leica M as an instrumental tool in achieving their vision for this project. “While its size and weight has been a factor in choosing this system, what really sets it apart from other compact systems is its ability to enable us to use rangefinder focusing,” said Murillo.

“The Leica RF system, paired with its high quality lenses, makes it a very irresistible proposition. RF focusing surprisingly yields very sharp results almost as if the images were manually focused. To use a different system is something that is unthinkable ever since we shifted to this 5 years ago,” added Echivarre.

Taking the quality of photos to a whole new level, Leica gladly presents a new addition to their very impressive portfolio of cameras—the Leica SL. It features an electronic viewfinder that utilizes EyeRes technology. With a latency time below the threshold of perception, an impressive resolution of 4.4 million pixels and a magnification reminiscent of a medium format camera, this electronic viewfinder offers an entirely new visual experience and numerous advantages: the final image is visible in the viewfinder before the shutter release is pressed, which enables optimum control over the final picture in any situation.

The Leica SL also has the high-performance Maestro II series processor that allows photographers to capture even the fastest-moving objects. Meanwhile, the 24 MP CMOS full-frame sensor guarantees impressive dynamic range, excellent contrast rendition, exceptional sharpness, the highest resolution, and noise-free images in almost all lighting conditions.

More than a professional still-picture camera with video recording capability, the Leica SL distinguishes itself as a fully pledged video camera. With its sensor and processor, the camera enables the production of professional videos in cinematic (4K) resolution.



“With a new camera in line, a gallery with inspiring artists and visions, we at Leica are very sanguine about celebrating more colorful years here in the Philippines,” said Edith Dychiao, General Manager of Leica Store Philippines.

Leica Store Philippines is located at the Lower Ground Floor, Greenbelt 5, Makati City. For more information, visit http://www.leica-camera.com/.


About Leica Camera
With a long heritage of over 165 years in quality German engineering Leica hand-crafts the world’s finest cameras, the world’s most brilliant lenses and sport optic tools. We capture and preserve memorable moments for the world with customer-orientated, inspirational, premium solutions. Leica helps transform vision into personal creative fulfilment, in many cases nurturing a fervent passion for expression that spans the decades.
Leica Camera has been in the frontline of photojournalism and related activities be it the Oskar Barnack Award for high quality reportage photography or presenting photographs taken by international photographers through its galleries that offer access to life’s hidden stories. In Germany, we build the world’s finest cameras and nurture the true, iconic soul of photography.

About Leica Camera Asia Pacific
Leica Camera Asia Pacific started operations in Singapore in March 2011. Led by Managing Director Sunil Kaul, emerging and developing markets such as Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and Philippines contributes to annual sales and growth to the premium German technical luxury brand in Asia Pacific.

About Leica Store Philippines
Leica Store Philippines is the official distributor and retailer of Leica Camera products in the Philippines. The store is located at Lower Ground Floor, Greenbelt 5, Ayala Center, Makati City. For more inquiries, please contact +632 729 5567.


SkinStation’s flagship branch opens in SM Megamall

SkinStation recently held a press conference and launched its flagship branch at the SM Megamall last November 27, 2014 with special guest 2008 Bb. Pilipinas International/ TV Personality/ Actress Ms. Patricia Fernandez.  PR guru Mr. Charlie Agatep, local media from ABS-CBN and Manila Bulletin, as well as lifestyle bloggers attended the press conference.  Afterwards, SkinStation’s ribbon-cutting ceremony and blessing was graced by SM Megamall mall management, among many other VIP attendees.  SkinStation Megamall marks the skin care company’s 20th branch in the country.  It is also the largest branch to date with 12 luxurious, private treatment rooms.

Now, urban sophisticates from the north, south, or central metro can get to experience the latest in skin care innovations through SkinStation’s advanced treatment procedures and DERMAX Professional product line – all at affordable prices and with guaranteed results.  Visit SkinStation’s newest branch in the Philippines’ largest shopping mall and discover ways on how to reveal your best skin.

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You may contact SkinStation Megamall branch at 09062187868 / 09422979663.

To know more about SkinStation and DERMAX Professional products, check out www.skinstation.ph or ‘like’ http://www.facebook.com/skinstationph.

UNIQLO opens 17th branch at Power Plant Mall

UNIQLO recently opened their 17th branch at Power Plant Mall, Rockwell,  Makati City.

UNIQLO fashion SHow

UNIQLO, Japan’s leading global apparel brand, unwrapped its highly anticipated collection for the 2014 Fall/Winter season which also carries its Kids and Babies expanded line-up during the opening of its 17th store in the Philippines at the Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center in Makati City last October 24, 2014.

UNIQLO’s new lineup, which believes that “kids should be free to be kids,” is centered on 5 ideas that should be incorporated in the design of the kids’ and babies’ clothes—freedom of movement, comfort, easier removal, fun designs and safety features to promote kids’ growth and health.

Among the special guests who enjoyed the fashion collection were Season 77 UAAP Most Valuable Player Kiefer Ravena of the Ateneo Blue Eagles, topnotch broadcaster Niña Corpuz, her husband Vince Rodriguez and their baby girl, editors and reporters from popular media entities, among others.

Uniqlo Nina Corpuz and baby

Another highlight of the Uniqlo store opening was the kids’ mini-fashion show which was cheered by the guests and shoppers.

The choice of Power Plant Mall was made to serve primarily Makati City residents and other key areas south of Metro Manila. Makati City is the Philippines’ financial/business district with a growing reputation as an entertainment and lifestyle and makes it an ideal location for UNIQLO’s new store, which is envisioned to become a place for the family to shop for their clothes. Power Plant Mall is a top-of-mind choice for shopping and leisure activities, particularly among the most discerning shoppers and mall-goers.


The Philippines is the 12th branch country of Japan where UNIQLO has presence, after opening stores in the US, UK, France, Russia, China, South Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan. UNIQLO also operates stores in other countries in Southeast Asia such as Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.

UNIQLO is seen as an innovator in the global apparel industry because of its various product lines that are highly functional and of outstanding quality at an affordable price. This UNIQLO promotes through its latest global brand concept “LifeWear,” which describes UNIQLO apparel as Clothes for a better life for everyone, every day.

The UNIQLO store at the R2 level of the Power Plant Mall is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends and 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on weekdays.

A taste of New York at Brooklyn’s

A taste of New York at Brooklyn’s N. Domingo, San Juan now available!  Formerly known as Brooklyn Pizza, Brooklyn’s new branch N. Domingo is located at the new Madison Square Garden along N. Domingo Street near the corner of Arciagga Street.

Brooklyn’s aims to bring the atmosphere of New York City in each and every store with a colorful theme like a graffite wall or art work displays paired with high-quality New York Pizza and mouth-watering pasta! With this new branch, the taste of New York has just become closer to residents of San Juan with delivery number 997-7999.



Kris Aquino is Chowking’s newest franchisee

MANILA, Philippines – For a hardworking career mom like Kris Aquino, a woman who juggles acting, hosting, endorsing, and parenting, finding time to celebrate success seem almost impossible. But being the type of person whose passion is fueled by  happiness, Kris has learned to appreciate everyday wins, no matter how big or small.

From squeezing in a home-cooked meal after a long day of taping, to planning short out of town trips with her two boys, Kris makes sure to reward herself from hard work.

“A lot of things happened this year-good and bad-but I see them all as contributors to building my character,” Kris shares. “I can say that I am really blessed with everything that has come my way so it’s important for me to find ways to celebrate everyday wins.”

In spite of Kris’ triumphs, she  doesn’t stop pursuing more. “I want to be successful for my kids. They keep me going.”

‘Just an endorser’ no more


Endorsements play a big part in Kris’ incessantly thriving career, that’s why it isn’t new to see her on TV or billboards mounted along the highways all across the country. Between businesses and promotions, however, one brand seemed to harmonize well with Kris’ taste and beliefs.

“I feel that if you’re going to endorse a brand, it should be something that’s both aspirational and reachable,” says Kris. “But it’s different if it’s about being a franchisee. One should invest on something they really trust and love.”

“That’s what I felt when I chose to partner with Chowking. Not only do I really love their food, it’s a brand I’ve found that’s comforting and one I trust that can bring me more success.”

Kris recounts how making stops at Chowking during long road trips for KrisTV tapings has been a ritual for her crew. “I really love their menu! Believe me, I’ve had countless takes in the shoots and the food is just irresistibly good,” she shares.

The partnership between Kris and Chowking says a lot about the trust and harmony between Kris and the largest network of Chinese restaurants nationwide – an ultimate testament of support, a clear indication that the relationship is not just for “commercials”.

The union commenced when Kris endorsed some of the fast food’s Chinese favorites earlier this year, Chinese-Style Fried Chicken and Chunky Asado Siopao. Today, the Philippines’ Queen of All Media will open her first Chowking franchise this November 2014, located at Ali Mall in Cubao, Quezon City.

A harmonious relationship

At present, Chowking currently boasts of over 400 branches in the Philippines. Some of the leading delicious Chinese favorites in their roster are the Chinese-Style Fried Chicken, Chunky Asado Siopao, Pork Chao Fan, and the Meaty Wanton Mami.

“We have always served our food to satisfy and energize our customers, keeping in mind that they deserve only the best as a reward for putting in the effort to create better lives every day for themselves and for their loved ones,” says Ferns Yu, President, Chowking.

Yu notes that Kris’ practice of celebrating every day wins is in sync with the brand’s principle behind serving good food to its consumers and ultimately, key to Chowking’s success.

“2014 has been yet another positive year for Chowking. We are aggressively renovating and opening new stores and this move with Kris is one of the best highlights of this endeavor,” says Yu. “It’s a rare opportunity to have your endorser as a franchisee. Perhaps, there’s really harmony between Kris and the brand.”

Yu adds that they knew how Kris favors home-cooked meals, as she mentioned it during the interviews they had during the shoots for the ads. “But it’s really heartwarming to know that she wouldn’t mind having a Chowking take-out to share with her family during the days that it’s really impossible for her to cook.”

That’s why this partnership says a lot about Chowking – it complements her taste and her appreciation towards good food; and given that we are a brand that continues to grow because of hard work, we find her as the best embodiment of our success.”

Indeed, when you see a celebrity shopping from the store of the brand he or she endorses, you could probably say that it’s an expected commendation. But when that endorser becomes a franchisee, ot becomes a totally different story – a bond forged in trust and harmony.