The most glamorous Filipina ladies of their times

Appearances, appearances, appearances… as defined by the legendary Diana Vreeland.

There are just some Filipina ladies who naturally have “star power”…

The Power of Glamour…

Yes, they all pleaded to be “simple ladies,” but by dint of inherited wealth, ancestry, social position, education, and exposure, they were pushed to the forefront of society with all the benefits as well as the attendant responsibilities.  Also, their wealth allowed them the luxury and privilege of looking beautiful in their maturity.

Pacita “Ting” Ongsiako de los Reyes-Phillips.

“Conching” Chuidian Sunico.

Monina Acuna.

Mercedes “Chedeng” Alba Lopez-Araneta [ Mrs. Jose Zaragoza Araneta ]

Victoria “Vic” Ledesma Lopez-Araneta [ Mrs. Salvador Zaragoza Araneta ].

Angela Olgado-Zobel [ Mrs. Jacobo Roxas Zobel ].

Mercedes Roxas Zobel-McMicking [ Mrs. Joseph McMicking ].

Virginia Llamas-Romulo [ Mrs. Carlos Romulo ].

Carmen Planas.

Lourdes “Lourding” de la Rama Alunan.

Charito Moreno.

Telly Albert-Zulueta.

Clarita Tankiang.

Angelina “Gely” Fajardo-Lopez [ Mrs. Francisco Tongoy Lopez ].

Lourdes Luciano-Ocampo [ Mrs. Fernando Hizon Ocampo ].

Victoria “Vicky” Syquia Quirino-Gonzalez-Delgado [ Mrs. Chito Gonzalez;  Mrs. Francisco Delgado Sr. ].

Maria Paz “Pacita” Madrigal-Warns-Gonzalez [Mrs. Herman Warns;  Mrs. Gonzalo Walfrido Rafols Gonzalez].

Consuelo “Chito” Madrigal-Vazquez-Collantes [ Mrs. Luis Earnshaw Vazquez;  Mrs. Manuel Collantes ].

Maria Luisa “Ising” Madrigal-Vazquez [Mrs. Daniel Earnshaw Vazquez].

Josefina “Pitang” Angeles Buyson-Eusebio.

Adelina Inez “Nelly” Montilla Montilla-Paterno-Lovina [Mrs Ramon Zamora Paterno;  Mrs Primitivo Lovina].

Lily de las Alas-Padilla [ Mrs. Ambrosio Bibby Padilla ].

Carmen “Chitang” Guerrero-Cruz-Nakpil [ Mrs. Ismael Arguelles Cruz;  Mrs. Angel Ernesto Sancho Nakpil ].

Priscilla “Prissy” de la Fuente-Sison [ Mrs. Carlos Moran Sison ].

Nelly Lacson-Gonzalez [ Mrs. Dindo Gonzalez ].

Letty Lizares-del Rosario.

Nena Lacson-Garcia.

Celine Lacson-Heras.

Sonia Gamboa-Santos [ Mrs. Horacio Santos ].

Imelda de la Paz Ongsiako-Cojuangco [ Mrs. Ramon Uychuico Cojuangco ].

Marie-Theresa “Bebe” Gallardo Lammoglia-Virata [ Mrs. Leonides Sarao Virata ].

Priscilla “Chona” Silos Recto-Ysmael-Kasten [ Mrs. Johnny Ysmael;  Mrs. Hans Kasten ].

Mary Hernandez-Prieto [ Mrs. Leo Prieto ].

Joji Felix-Velarde.

Victoria “Vicky” Pfitz Zobel de Ayala – Vallejo-Nagera [Mrs Vallejo-Nagera].

Elvira Bermejo Ledesma-Manahan [ Mrs. Constantino Perez-Canon Manahan ].

Maria “Baby” Araneta-Fores [ Mrs. Raul Fores ].

Angeles “Nene” Tuason-Quimson.

Presentacion “Presy” Moreno Lopez-Psinakis.

Imelda Trinidad Romualdez-Marcos [ Mrs. Ferdinand Edralin Marcos ].

Zita Bartolome Fernandez-Feliciano.

Cristina Castaner-Ponce Enrile [ Mrs. Juan Ponce Enrile ].

Edith Nakpil-Rabat.

Fe Lugue Sarmiento-Panlilio [ Mrs. Jose Lazatin Panlilio ].

Angelina “Chona” Lazatin Mejia-Lopez [Mrs Alberto Javellana Lopez].

Maria Victoria “Minnie” de la Rama Osmena.

Maria Regina “Regi” Lopez Araneta-Teodoro [ Mrs. Enrique Teodoro Jr. ]

Amparito Llamas-Lhuillier [ Mrs. Michel Jones Lhuillier ].

Gemma Guerrero Cruz-Araneta.

Isabel Arrastia Preysler.

Cristina Valdes.

Gloria Diaz.

Cynthia Serrano-Araneta [Mrs Benito Valdes Araneta].

Toni Serrano-Parsons.

Esperanza “Baby Girl” Dimayuga Baluyut-Fricke.

“Frannie” Osorio Aguinaldo-Jacinto [Mrs RJ Jacinto].

“Bettina” Mejia Lopez-Osmena [Mrs Sergio Osmena III].

Maria Victoria “Marivic” Madrigal Vazquez.

Margarita “Margie” Moran-Floirendo [ Mrs. Antonio Floirendo Jr. ].

Maria Cristina “Maricris” Cardenas-Zobel [ Mrs. Inigo Urquijo Zobel ].

Rose Anne Cu-Unjieng de Pampelonne.

Margarita “Gaita” Araneta Fores.


[ *The list is restricted to the ladies of the DBF “de buena familia.” ]


  1. Alicia Perez said,

    February 23, 2014 at 6:05 am

    Aldo Villa,

    According to Google:

    having glamour.
    “one of the world’s most glamorous women”
    synonyms: beautiful, attractive, lovely, bewitching, enchanting, beguiling; elegant, chic, stylish, fashionable; charming, charismatic, appealing, alluring, seductive; informalclassy, glam, styling/stylin’
    “a glamorous woman”
    exciting, thrilling, stimulating;
    dazzling, glittering, glossy, colorful, exotic;
    informalritzy, glitzy, jet-setting
    “a glamorous lifestyle”

    pleasingly graceful and stylish in appearance or manner.
    “she will look elegant in black”
    synonyms: stylish, graceful, tasteful, sophisticated, classic, chic, smart, fashionable, modish; refined, gracious, dignified, poised, beautiful, lovely, charming, artistic, aesthetic; cultivated, polished, cultured; dashing, debonair, suave, urbane
    “an elegant black outfit”

    The two qualities are not necessarily the same. There are nuances.

    After all, the blog post is titled “The most glamorous Filipinas of their times” NOT “The most elegant Filipinas of their times.” Make the distinction.

    Right, Toto?

    Alicia Perez

  2. Aldo Villa said,

    February 20, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    Whoever created this list fails to realize that elegance is innate, not bought or manufactured. Indeed, some of the women on this list have a reputation for flaunting their wealth to the level of vulgarity. To add a footnote that the list is limited to the ladies of de buena familia is itself an expression of pretentiousness and, ultimately, silliness and stupidity.

  3. August 27, 2013 at 4:51 am

    and of course who will forget Maria Concepcion “Baby” Fernando who is still slim, fabulous, and moves with class and elegance — a timeless beauty, indeed

  4. August 1, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Fashion Entrepreneur Evelyn Sineneng-Smith Accepted Miss Indonesia Agnes Liong’s Challenge to Create for her a Knock-out Evening Gown for the Miss Asian America Pageant

    It will be an evening of beauty, elegance and culture on Saturday, August 4, at The Palace of Fine Arts Theatre in San Francisco, where the 2012 Miss Asian America Pageant will be held. Miss Indonesia, Agnes Liong, viewed hundreds of evening gowns and couldn’t say “yes” to any gown until she found Evelyn Sineneng Smith’s website

    Silicon Valley, CA (PRWEB) August 01, 2012

    For several evenings in July, Miss Indonesia, Agnes Liong and her friend, Johnson Lu drove toward the hills above Silicon Valley to the showroom of Fashion Entrepreneur, Evelyn Sineneng-Smith. It is where Evelyn is carefully crafting not a high-tech gizmo, but a beaded, form-fitting golden sunset yellow gown, embellished with 5-inch wide embroidered hibiscus organza flowers. It is fully beaded with rare golden yellow pearls.

    Hibiscus, which is a popular flower both in Indonesia and the Philippines, signifies the countries of origin of both Agnes Liong and Evelyn Sineneng-Smith, respectively. These embroidered hibiscus will sway and flutter as Agnes walks the runway at the pageant.

    After retiring from her high-pressured career in Silicon Valley as a Bonded Immigration Consultant for 18 years, Evelyn Sineneng-Smith came full circle and re-entered the business world as a Fashion Entrepreneur. Growing up in the Philippines, Evelyn watched with awe, embroiderers, crochet artists, beaders and applique artisans working with their hands. Those images left profound impressions in Evelyn’s creative spirit. Since then, and in the midst of a different career, she continuously mastered the art of embellishments on evening gowns, even for her own personal collection. Her friends can say that Evelyn is totally mesmerized by the creative genuises of Vera Wang, Georgina Chapman and Monique Lhuillier!

    So when challenged by Agnes to create for her a knock-out evening gown for the pageant, Evelyn immediately quipped, “I would like you to walk that runway in a gown with flowers which will flutter as you walk.” Agnes couldn’t understand what Evelyn meant, gave her full trust and confidence in Evelyn, and, after numerous fittings, she started to see Evelyn’s vision turning into reality.

    Agnes Liong will represent Indonesia on Saturday, August 4, at the Miss Asian America Pageant 2012 at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre in San Francisco, California. Evelyn Sineneng-Smith’s creativity can be viewed at

  5. March 1, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Evelyn Sineneng-Smith recently conducted a lecture to the Haute Couture

    class of Carla Zimbelman at the Monterey Peninsula College in Monterey, California.

    Evelyn described to Ms. Zimbelman’s students the haute couture techniques utilized by

    Monique Lhuillier in her bridal gowns, which were worn by, among others, Britney Spears when she married

    K-Federline, Christine Baumgartner (to Kevin Costner), Vanessa Manillo (to Nick Lachey). The students were

    at awe at the incredible detail in these gowns, which cost from $5,000. to $25,000.! Evelyn referred

    to Monique’s craftsmanship in creating handmade roses, origami flowers, frayed ruffled organza, lace over

    lace embroidery, the details which can upgrade an ordinary simple gown to “haute couture” level.

    The segment about “Monique Lhuillier: The Business Empire” was more interesting to the students,

    who may pursue a career in Haute Couture. Evelyn discussed the infrastructure

    of Monique Lhuillier’s design business, from her flagship salons, to her accredited bridal salon distributors, to the

    corporate indentities, to the licensing of her designs, which now extend to dinnerware, stemware, fine printed invitations, beautiful

    scented candles, and others. Monique Lhuillier’s bridal designs are sold in the finest bridal salons globally,

    all over the US, Canada, South America, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the Pacific Rim countries.

    The buzz in the fashion industry is that she is “competing with Vera Wang”. Well, there’s also Georgina Chapman,

    another designer with the same caliber and with the same “deep pockets”.

    Ms. Sineneng-Smith was able to lecture on Monique Lhuillier from three different perspectives: business, legal

    and fashion, three areas where she spent her education and career. She concluded her lecture by

    inspiring the students that, even if they may not come from a very affluent family like Monique Lhuillier,

    they can still make it in the fashion business if they continue to develop their creative talents.

    Ms. Sineneng-Smith believes that one should continuously learn new skills to remain competitive here in America,

    and that “obtaining a green card is only the beginning of an immigrant’s long journey here in the United States.”

    You can view her at

  6. Tessie Vergara said,

    February 6, 2012 at 10:32 pm

    … and the list goes on and on. My recollection tells me the yardstick for the old Manila’s elite, high society women were: beauty, wealth by pedigree, poise, fashion and education (in that order). Media scrutiny, played a major role in the likes of the popular society & fashion editors recognizing and publicizing their muse of glamour.

    I have seen photos of Annabelle Morelos-, …Padilla-Rufino from the 60’s & in recent years, Lucy Torres-Gomez. I would like to put them in the list too.

    Thank you for the update.

  7. Cristina Valdes said,

    December 18, 2011 at 2:09 am

    Pressy Lopez Psinakis
    Toni Serrano Parsons

  8. Enrique Bustos said,

    November 14, 2011 at 4:14 am

    If i am not mistaken the name of the owner of Cucina italiana is Carmelo Lammoglia he is the elder brother of Bebe Lammoglia-Virata and Bambi Lammoglia-Harper

  9. Ernesto Natividad said,

    November 11, 2011 at 12:21 am

    Does anyone know the owner’s name (Last name is Lammoglia) of the “Cucina Italiana” on Padre Faura in Manila? He was italian married to a filipina and they had a daughter named Lisa and a son. The restaurant “Cucina Italiana” existed in the 1950’s-60’s.

  10. cork reyes said,

    October 26, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Why not make a book on these beauties?

  11. Bing Abad said,

    October 11, 2011 at 9:56 am

    is Susan Magalona still around? still alive?

  12. brian tan said,

    October 9, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    what about mary beth lopez de leon and her sister diana jean lopez?

  13. Enrique Bustos said,

    October 8, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    Pacita Ongsiako de los Reyes-Phillips.[Mrs Ralph Philipps.]

    Monina Acuna [Mrs Herman German Jr.]

    Telly Albert-Zulueta.[ Mrs Rafael Zulueta.]

    Clarita Tankiang.[Mrs Conrado Sanchez.]

    Josefina “Pitang” Buyson-Eusebio.[ Mrs Jesus Eusebio.]

    Letty Lizares-del Rosario.[Mrs Manuel del Rosario.]

    Nena Lacson-Garcia.[Mrs Eduardo Garcia.]

    Celine Lacson-Heras.[Mrs Antonio Heras]

    Sonia Gamboa-Santos.[Mrs Horacio Santos]

    Chona Recto-Ysmael-Kasten [ Mrs. Johnny Ysmael

    Joji Felix-Velarde.[Mrs Herminio Velarde]

    Angeles “Nene” Tuason-Quimson.[Mrs John T. Quimson.]

    Zita Fernandez-Feliciano.[Mrs Raymundo Feliciano.]

    Edith Nakpil-Rabat.[Mrs Francisco Rabat.]

    Maria Victoria “Minnie” de la Rama Osmena.[Mrs Joselito Jacinto, Mrs Jesus Cabarrus Jr, Mrs Dwight Stuart.]

    Isabel Arrastia Preysler.[Mrs Julio Iglesias, Mrs Carlos Falco, Mrs Miguel Boyer.]

    Maria Victoria “Marivic” Madrigal Vazquez.[ Mrs Laurel]

    Rose Anne Cu-Unjieng de Pampelonne [Mrs Bruno Pampelonne.]

    Nelly Montilla Paterno Lovina [ Mrs Ramon Paterno,Mrs Primitivo Lovina.]

  14. September 29, 2011 at 10:12 am

    Bernie Montinola-Aboitiz

    Karla Prieto Delgado-Araneta

    Kate Fernandez-Moynihan

    Gina Tambunting-Roxas

    Menchu Menchaca-Soriano

    Regina Leviste-Boulos

    these are my age group between 50 and 60 years.

  15. Myles Garcia said,

    September 21, 2011 at 5:50 am

    Ipe N. asked: What about the “Chest Freezer” varieties?


    Sounds like the morgue variety to me.

    A few of those already are. 😉

  16. Ipê Nazareno said,

    September 20, 2011 at 5:05 pm

    Alicia Perez wrote: “Just wait some time… Perhaps Toto will have a future blog post on ‘The Pridyider Beauties’… nice-looking ladies the sizes of refrigerators.”

    What about the “Chest Freezer” varieties?

  17. Alicia Perez said,

    September 19, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Just wait some time… Perhaps Toto will have a future blog post on “The Pridyider Beauties”… nice-looking ladies the sizes of refrigerators.

    Alicia Perez

  18. Enrique Bustos said,

    September 19, 2011 at 5:42 am

    Margarita “Gaita” Araneta Fores
    Tina Maristela-Ocampo

  19. alvin gonzalez said,

    September 18, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    What about Eumelia “Mely” Concepcion-Hechanova?

  20. September 16, 2011 at 3:22 am


    I agree. Hahahah!!!

    Toto Gonzalez

  21. Presy Guevara said,

    September 15, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    Very funny Larry, who else could think of such categories? Thanks for the laugh.

  22. September 15, 2011 at 1:38 am

    WE CAN make sub-LISTS and even sub-plots for the next SUBJECTIVE post.

    1. PLASTIC Fruit for the most senior and cosmetically enhanced, The DONYAS over 80 or dead ……………..

    2. Preserved FRUIT, under 80 years and can still RISE to the occasion.The DOYENNES are rarely seen.

    3. Fruit COCKTAIL or Fruit SALAD may be the mixed breed, the glamorous by marriage, the glamorous by accident. 60 to 70 years old.

    4. FRESH Fruit are under 60 and their best asset to fuel their glamor is their youth.

  23. September 12, 2011 at 4:49 pm


    Well, $$$ megabucks can buy glamour. Although it cannot buy natural beauty. It can buy altered beauty though, and how!!! 🙂

    Actually, glamour is impossible without money, preferably lots of $$$ money.

    Toto Gonzalez

  24. Myles Garcia said,

    September 12, 2011 at 7:02 am

    Toto, like your summer ‘frutas’ list, this list is growing ever so-long. Ang dami diyan mga over-ripe at mga palpak na!! (Too many over-ripe and inappropriate names in terms of ‘glamour.’) Just because some of them can buy top names and couturier labels don’t mean they’re top banana either. Siguro top Carmen Miranda; but no top banana. 🙂

    Less is more.

  25. Enrique Bustos said,

    September 11, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Conchitina Sevilla-Bernardo

  26. Regina Lopez Araneta-Teodoro said,

    September 10, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    While it is true that after the War, Victoria L. de Araneta would not qualify in the classic term of “glamourous” as she wore homespun clothes from her live-in “costurera,” she did wear beautiful, elegant, and expensive ternos prior to WW2 created for her by the “au courante” modista. She spent a fortune on her clothes and during the war she proceeded to sell them, her curtains, and what she could get her hands on, not only to survive but to invest the proceeds!!! After liberation, she had a different lifestyle. NO longer a “socialite” but a businesswoman, a civic leader, and an educator and expensive, stylish clothing was no longer a priority. She created her own style.

    She was NOT stooped. She held herself with ramrod poise. That falls to several of her cousins who I shall not name out of respect and affection. She had a fabulous figure which she flaunted to the hilt with her straight shift ternos that emphasized what was then referred to as a “Coca-Cola body”. She had great stage presence, charisma and could captivate a room upon entrance. Quite a gift.

    Regina Araneta-Teodoro

  27. Presy Guevara said,

    September 9, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    Criselda Lontoc?

  28. Enrique Bustos said,

    September 9, 2011 at 4:48 am

    Angeles “Nene” Tuason-Quimson

  29. Myles Garcia said,

    September 9, 2011 at 3:53 am

    Minnie’s grandmother, Dona _____ de la Rama (?), was supposedly the undisputed queen of Cebu and Visayan society in her day.

    And the Escano sisters of Cebu were legendary beauties. One of my uncles embarked on an excursion to Cebu to specifically court one of them. (He didn’t succeed.)

  30. Presy Guevara said,

    September 8, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    How about Cynthia Sun and Bessie Ocampo?

  31. September 8, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    And my Tita Presy Lopez Psinakis ………

  32. September 8, 2011 at 12:30 pm

    And Mama Mary Prieto ………..

  33. Myles Garcia said,

    September 8, 2011 at 6:20 am

    Another glamorous one in the vein of the well-coiffed, bouffant, frozen smile school of IRM, was Cristina Caedo (Galang, I believe), if memory serves me right, the inimitable Sor Esperanza of Assumption cast her “the Queen of Transylvania” (but much, much younger than the movie version) in Assumption-San Lo’s totally decadent production of MY FAIR LADY in 1965. At that time too, Cristina had joined the Blue Ladies but from what was rumored, she was careful not to be too visible because she might be getting more attention that the #1 Blue Lady…who needed all the star power she could muster on her way to gaining entry to Malacanang.

    Also, before they had to keep lower profiles due to the ascent of IRM, Dina Jacinto and Julie Rufino were leading doyennes of pre-1965 Manila high society and cut their own swaths of style and high fashion.

  34. Ipê Nazareno said,

    September 8, 2011 at 6:11 am

    Susan Magalona
    Carmen Guerrero Cruz Nakpil
    Carmen Keller Rosales-Puyat
    Cristina Castañer-Ponce Enrile

  35. September 8, 2011 at 6:02 am


    Perhaps you, or your sources, saw the 3 ladies in their latter years…

    According to the seniors I know/knew, the 3 ladies were very glamorous in their heydays: Victoria Lopez-Araneta during the 1920s-30s, Maria Luisa “Ising” Madrigal-Vazquez during the 1960s-80s, and Marie Theresa “Bebe” Lammoglia-Virata during the 1960s-80s.

    Toto Gonzalez

  36. Enrique Bustos said,

    September 8, 2011 at 5:43 am

    Remy dela Rama -Arguelles
    Letty Ledesma Montelibano

  37. Marina Sanchez said,

    September 7, 2011 at 10:20 pm


    According to the surviving seniors, Victoria “Vic” Ledesma Lopez-Araneta, Maria Luisa “Ising” Madrigal-Vazquez, and Marie Theresa “Bebe” Lammoglia-Virata were NOT glamorous because they did not have the poise and the good figures. They did not wear beautiful clothes and they did not wear high heels. Victoria was stooped in posture, wore unflattering “costurera” Filipiniana dresses, and wore an oversized wig. Ising’s half-slips showed every now and then. Bebe, despite the genuine Valentino Garavani and Yves Saint-Laurent dresses, looked like a big cargo ship about to sail.

    In contrast, Lily de las Alas-Padilla was really glamorous.

    Marina Sanchez

  38. Dr. Taddy Buyson Gonzales said,

    September 7, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    The glamorous ladies of old had good, shapely figures, dressed well, wore heels, and glided rather than walked.

    The fat matrons of old wore “zapatillas” and were usually sloppy-looking.

  39. Enrique Bustos said,

    September 7, 2011 at 5:31 am

    Priscilla de la Fuente-Sison
    Nelly Lacson-Gonzalez
    Margarita de los Reyes-Cojuangco

  40. Myles Garcia said,

    September 6, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    To this list, I would add: Lily de las Alas Padilla; and Nora Villanueva Daza.

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