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Beverly Dayanan: On top of her game

Success doesn’t discriminate through gender. With Contempo Property Holdings reaching the P1 billion mark in gross sales after just a year of operations, Beverly Dayanan is an example of how hard work and attention to detail come together for a business that goes nowhere but up.

It’s a man’s world. It’s a saying heard time and time again by women actively taking charge of their own careers, whatever field they may be in. Not that this is surprising. Studies have shown that on average, women are paid 78% of what their male counterparts in the same position earn. It’s an upsetting statistic, to say the least—as women have made many strides to secure a place in the society where she can vote, work and be heard.

Gender equality, however, needs time to develop. After all, hundreds of years of disparity are hard to undo. Fortunately, some countries are proving to be more progressive in this area than others. The Global Gender Gap Report is an international index that ranks countries based on how well they divide resources and opportunities between their male and female population. It measures gender equality based on economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, political empowerment, and health and survival. Data gathered from more than 142 countries in a span of nine years shows that the Philippines ranks ninth this year—being the best performer in closing the gender gap in Asia. With an almost equal ratio between men and women in terms of economic participation and opportunities, Filipinas are among the most influential and hardworking women in the world.

Case in point: Beverly Dayanan of Contempo Property Holdings and Sunberry Homes Inc. The real estate development mogul believes that success is in no way determined by gender and is a matter of choice. “There’s simply no barrier for those who are focused on their goals and work hard for them,” she says. That firm determination has proven to be valuable in the career she has navigated for herself, showing her mettle in Contempo Property’s first development venture in Cebu—Bamboo Bay.

“It was born of my dream to offer better living options to mid-income homeowners,” she shares. “A lot of research and fact-finding went into the creation of Bamboo Bay, and it’s a result of inputs from prospective buyers and from my own experiences as a condo dweller for almost 15 years.”

"There's simply no barrier for those who are focused on their goals and work hard for them" - Beverly Dayanan (Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015: Photography by Robo Formacion/Hair and Makeup by Emi Ayag/Draped blouse by Oj Hofer)

“There’s simply no barrier for those who are focused on their goals and work hard for them” – Beverly Dayanan (Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015: Photography by Robo Formacion/Hair and Makeup by Emi Ayag/Draped blouse by Oj Hofer)

With women having traditionally been in charge of the home, it seems only natural to have a female CEO at the helm of developing a residential community. “In real estate, you don’t just look at the macro side of the business. You have to look into the details, and women are good at that,” Beverly explains. She adds, “In condominium living, an inch of space really matters. You have to consider and figure everything out holistically, looking at the most minute details.” This insight allowed Beverly to create living areas that are space efficient. Minor design points that seem not all that important—a longer bathroom counter, exhaust pipes above the stove area, overhead countertops—are actually practical advantages for one’s daily routine in the long run.

The real estate project also benefits from Beverly’s understanding of basic human instinct, with Bamboo Bay fostering the sense of community that may be diminishing in this age of digital communication. The friendly neighborhood concept is shown in such facilities as their community store, prayer room, barbecue area and jogging paths, all of which are positioned to encourage interaction among homeowners. “We need to be reminded that we are social beings who need to bond to promote our social values. Establishing friendships and fellowship is an important thing in life,” she quips.

Understanding the importance of collaboration is also why Beverly makes sure to surround herself with an outstanding team of female consultants who offer advice on various aspects of the project. From Tess Javier for architecture and design, Tetta Baad for marketing and sales to Lilu Aliño for PR and advertising, her openness to guidance from those with the experience and skills allows her to learn and excel in the business even further. “Many of my ideas are formed from constant interaction with my stakeholders,” she explains. “When you touch base with your intermediaries, you gain insights and get to understand your business more from their point of view. I find their feedback very valuable, and it becomes my guide and parameter for improvement.”

Using this as a foundation for her hands-on approach to management, she makes certain that she is kept abreast on all operations of the business. “I like to get updates in real time,” she reveals. “Everyone is synchronized, that way, decision-making and deliveries become faster.” She discloses that this ensures that the organizational and operational chain is linked and functions cohesively at all times.

"I'd like to be a role model for women out there, to show that being a woman is never a hindrance for success." - Beverly Dayanan (Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015: Photography by Robo Formacion/Hair and Makeup by Emi Ayag/Long-sleeved dress by Jun Escario)

“I’d like to be a role model for women out there, to show that being a woman is never a hindrance for success.” – Beverly Dayanan (Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015: Photography by Robo Formacion/Hair and Makeup by Emi Ayag/Long-sleeved dress by Jun Escario)

Her attention to detail in managing her team also comes with its share of challenges. Beverly concurs that people management is something to be worked on. “You see the need for coaching, but you also want to have faith in your people,” she says. Adding further, “You shouldn’t tolerate failure, but you understand that it’s a confidence booster when your employees are able to solve problems in their own way. Keeping them focused and mentoring them while gaining input is a very exciting challenge though.”

This spirit of empowerment finds its way into Beverly’s community undertakings as well. As a dedicated member of the Zonta Club of Cebu I, she embraces the organization’s global mission of advancing women’s status. Being in charge of service and advocacy, Beverly champions gender equality and ending violence against women. “You can’t close your eyes to the plight of your fellow women—especially those who are battered physically, psychologically or emotionally,” she says. Her work with Zonta Cebu I gives her the opportunity to do concrete things to help transform lives and deliver real change. Among the club’s noteworthy efforts is its partnership with the Vicente Gullas Memorial Hospital to put up a Crisis Intervention and Referral Center in Banilad. The center will be a place where women can go for help for psychological, legal, medical, economic, safety and security, and even spiritual concerns. The Cebu chapter is also working on a barangay and campus campaign to raise awareness of its violence against women advocacy.

The club’s cause is very close to her heart because it aligns with one of Beverly’s personal goals. “I’d like to be a role model for women out there, to show that being a woman is never a hindrance to success; and that women have the same privileges and opportunities as men in the eyes of God,” Beverly explains. Fuelled by her dynamism, she hopes to inspire other women to start their own businesses, and shares a few pieces of advice for those who are looking to go into their ventures. “Start with what you love doing. Put your hands and mind where your heart is. You have to be hands- on—don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty, and get firsthand experience of all the operations.”

"Start with what you love doing. Put your hands and mind where your heart is." - Beverly Dayanan (Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015: Photography by Robo Formacion/Hair and Makeup by Emi Ayag)

“Start with what you love doing. Put your hands and mind where your heart is.” – Beverly Dayanan (Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015: Photography by Robo Formacion/Hair and Makeup by Emi Ayag)

Truly, success does come to those who work hard for it—whether you wear the pants or the dress. Although Beverly admits that there’s yet so much work she has to do, it looks like an exciting year is up ahead for the lady entrepreneur. “Sunberry Homes Subdivision will be launched in the second quarter of next year, as a response to the pressing demand for socialized and economic housing.” This Mactan project is the company’s contribution to nation building, and will provide homes to lower-budget families. As for Bamboo Bay, the development will only continue to grow. “We are soon going to start construction on Bamboo Bay Tower 3, which will have more than the usual services that will continue to uphold the values we put in place.”

It’s women like Beverly who, by leveling the playing field, have contributed to the positive ranking the Philippines has gained in the world’s state of gender equality. At the rate she’s going, she’s heading no other way but up. For years, women have quietly guided the lives of men, and—contrary to what men may admit—have taken a place alongside them: from the mothers who rear them, to the wives that support them. It’s about time women have a voice, and through Beverly Dayanan’s example, it’s clear that this can definitely be done.

Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015by Shari Quimbo creative director Melo Esguerra photography Robo Formacion hair and makeup Emi Ayag assistant Rhey Abella

Originally published in Zee Lifestyle December-January 2015


EXCLUSIVE: Never Been Released Behind-the-Scenes photos of Zee Lifestyle’s Emerald Issue Cover Shoot

Photographer Jan Gonzales, Margie Lhuillier, June Alegrado, Kryz Uy, Mia Arcenas, Amparito Lhuillier and Alice Woolbright

We celebrate the strength and resilience of womanhood in this year’s Mother’s Day by looking back at these never been seen before behind-the-scenes shots of  Zee Lifestyle Magazine’s Emerald (20th Anniversary) Issue cover shoot featuring the “Leading Women” of Cebu.



To celebrate the 20 beautiful years of Zee Lifestyle as the ultimate source of lifestyle news in Cebu, we handpicked 12 strong and stylish women of Cebu from every age group. These women show us that independently building one’s strength of character and living one’s passion knows no age. From the beginning, Zee has always been empowering women, providing the Cebuanas a platform to express their beauty and confidence, share their passions, engage in economic and political participation which yields to viewing women with equality and respect that we deserve.

photography Jan Gonzales
creative director Melo Esguerra
art director Doro Barandino
sittings editor Shari Quimbo
beauty director Romero Vergara
makeup Arnauld, Janice Barillo and Nicko dela Peña
hair Jessie Egos and Jake Arias
fashion styling Clint Potestas
production assistants Patty Taboada and Katrina Labra
locale Marco Polo Plaza Hotel Cebu

Twelve women, two sets and one afternoon. That is how the Zee Lifestyle team decided to celebrate the title’s 20th anniversary issue—with a challenge that, in some ways, is one of our biggest productions yet.

The idea came along when publisher Eva Gullas and editor-at-large Melo Esguerra were discussing a cover story that would best represent the magazine’s history. From commissioning artistic depictions on Cebu to playing with the anniversary’s emerald theme, no idea had stuck until Melo suggested putting a series of women who had already been on the cover of Zee, again on the cover all together.

Oj Hofer and Margot Osmeña

Kryz Uy

Coming up with the list of names, of course, was no small feat. Our covers from the last 20 years have included several strong personalities—from philanthropists and politicians, to actors, and names to soon watch out for, our pages have seen them all. The challenge, then, was to come up with a list of women who had been driving forces in their respective fields when they had first appeared on the cover, and remain as powerful players even today.

Amparito Lhuillier, Kryz Uy, Alice Woolbright, Margot Osmeña and June Alegrado all wearing MIRANDA KONSTANTINIDOU

Photographer Jan Gonzales and creative director Melo Esguerra

With input from editors, both past and present, we rounded up 12 women from different age groups, fields and industries, who are all strong and passionate at whatever it is they do—Amparito Lhuillier, who remains the doyenne of Cebu society as a picture of elegance and class with her continuing efforts in business and social causes; the always-stylish Marguerite Lhuillier, herself an example of sophistication in all her efforts, whether business or otherwise; Margot Osmeña, who as a Cebu City Councilor has spearheaded many urban projects directed for the betterment of living in the city; hospitality mavens June Alegrado and Alice Woolbright, who are deeply involved in the rise of their brands, Bluewater properties and Beverly Hotel, respectively; Christina Garcia Frasco, the current Lilo-an Mayor advocating impressively progressive efforts in the area; former model Fiona King, now a major player in homegrown real estate with projects like Bloq Residences; the fitness enthusiast Danessa Onglatco who has espoused wellness with the opening of Yogahub; restaurateur Carla Yeung-McKowen who is behind the city’s hottest dining outlet, The Pig & Palm; designer Mia Arcenas, whose signature resort wear and accessories are representative of Cebu’s laid back lifestyle; Kym Maitland-Smith, who juggles efforts in swimsuit design through SOLTI Activewear and is building awareness for the vegan lifestyle; and Kryz Uy, whose online presence was a strong one even before fashion blogs were on anyone’s radar.

Kymberly Maitland-Smith

Makeup Artist Romero Vergara, June Alegrado and Hair Stylist Jessie Egos

An impressive bunch, for sure. These women properly embody the characteristics that Zee Lifestyle looks for in one who makes the cover—beauty, yes, but also elegance coupled with individuality, and always a strong drive to succeed in whatever efforts they are directed.

This, it turns out, was the fitting tribute to the years Zee has been Cebu’s premier lifestyle bible, as well as a sign of the things forthcoming. Our 12 cover stars may have been on our pages before, but if their current efforts are any indication, our pages will continue to see more of them in the future. And as continuing purveyors of what Cebu has to offer, Zee Lifestyle will happily be seeing them in the years to come.

FROM LEFT Marguerite wears CARY SANTIAGO; June wears PHILIP RODRIGUEZ; Mia wears MIA ARCENAS; Kryz wears ELIZABETH HALLIE; Amparito wears MONIQUE LHUILLIER; Alice wears PHILIP RODRIGUEZ; Fiona wears VANIA ROMOFF; Margot wears PHILIP RODRIGUEZ; Danessa wears OJ HOFER; Carla wears ALICE+OLIVIA; Christina wears DINO LLOREN

(This article had already been published in Zee Lifestyle’s December 2016 Emerald Issue, “Leading Women” on pages 140-155.)

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La Liga Henerales: Shaping History Awareness Back Again in Cebu

La Liga Henerales is a community of young talents passionately promotes historical awareness through periodic costumes carefully researched for its authenticity and accuracy and promoted as well in events and schools.

Only few individuals before were into pursuit in this historical awareness project until the age of communication where internet is convenient in the palm of our hands through our gadgets. New information travel fast and data is retrievable, yet also possess a disadvantage with the plethora of different social media platforms carried by various makers as well. In a daily basis, historical backgrounds are unearthed making its trend until now as new discoveries are released, but the idea of these information being shown and shared is as close as not valuing or commemorating to its sources leaving this information just a trend.

There is a certain community of Cebuanos that are taking a quest to rewrite and restructure what was in the past, filling the gaps in facts with further research of variable sources that are made debatable but sticks to it true cause, to unveil the truths of our heritage and our origins, as Cebuanos and as Filipinos as well.

La Liga Henerales is a Cebu-based, non-profit organization composed of a group of talented, committed and respectable individuals from different walks of life, schools and profession whose primary aim is to promote both, Cebuano and filipino culture and heritage that was depicted before in pre-colonial and colonial eras via re-enactment with costumes vested in proper research and investigation to achieve authenticity. They also push their cause on schools and other social gatherings promoting and spreading awareness about our local, and national heroes that we look up to. With these said, they also portray a closer look of the lifestyle of the past to where they perform stories, perform forgotten dances and rituals and portray their individual roles, vital in the fight of our country’s future during those challenging times, and in honor to spread awareness of the lost practices we had in those times.

The Founder

Combining passion and education. Louis Villaflor re-enacts his way patriotism through his periodical costumes and expresses his love for Cebu and Philippines as a culture-centric country.

Louis Kenneth Villaflor, an entrepreneur and an avid history enthusiast and costumer, founded the group on the purpose of re-educating the youth about real local and national history, he saw the opportunity to combine his favourite hobbies which is costuming and story role-playing and the process to instill the historical awareness and value among the youth and in schools, along with a group of fellow enthusiasts who shares his passion about research and history, they took it among themselves to be purposeful in the advocacy in spreading historical awareness in schools or events by wearing periodically correct costumes and sharing the stories and its value to the youth.

Behind the Garments

With the its senior expertise of fashion design and a teacher of the field, his passion also of history caters also in his designs as he pushes through sustainable fashion and historical awareness combined.

Meet Rodney “Pee-Wee” Senining, who has been in the fashion industry since the late 90’s, strives  in concepts of avant-garde, innovation and cutting edge-fashion forward design. And also a teacher of Architecture, Fine Arts and Design of University of San Carlos, he had grown into research of books like the holy grail in the Library Resource Center and is always fascinated of the periodical times and how to preserve it; Hence, his interest had grown for the affinity of Periodical Costumes and Sustainable Fashion.

 Being part of the group La Liga Henerales, he was tasked to instantly be their mentor for the young talents and as the organization is still new and developing with limited funds, resourcefulness and research were done to come up with a good output of photo shoot and was quite proud of it and still promise on the next editions of pieces to be more historically accurate. Even as teacher for Fashion Design in SAFAD, his expertise comes hand in hand with the members as he helps them do research as well. His passion and interest somehow led him with enough knowledge to key the insights of the significant periods and historical backgrounds of it.

Historical Awareness in Cebu

The strength and progress of a country is anchored on how well they know and honor its history. The means of historical awareness in Cebu is almost non-existent among the Cebuanos, although we push forward in tourism and promote beauty through sceneries and other aspects of culture yet never commemorate deeply on historical icons such as our other local heroes, and ancient cultures as well that is almost been forgotten in an urban Cebu. Nevertheless, as long as communities’ like La Liga Henerales are now evolving in a learning state by real discovery by multiple resources, this will always reflect of how we appreciate love, patriotism and honor to our country and would look forward to progress.


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After the Razzmatazz and Razzle-dazzle: Post-Sinulog Thoughts

by Chrissy Grey Resaba

Buntings of red and yellow were removed from post to post. Streets were cleared and cleaned. Fireworks displays were faded in the sky. Beats of #prititit and tunes of tourism-booster Cebu tracks were being put to archive once again.

Contingents from different parts of Cebu and Central Visayas had gone back home. Party people had gone sober while some are still recovering. Traffic has gone back to normal. Businesses, as well, has gone back to normal.

However, all the fun and loud chants, smooth grooves, and frenzied choreographies are still replaying from the memory banks of the people who celebrated Sinulog 2020. The queen of all festivals in the Philippines has left again another mark of cultural and festive nostalgia to the people from all parts of the world and Cebuanos alike.

After all the razzmatazz and razzle-dazzle, let’s get to know what are these IG and FB personalities’ #PostSinulogThoughts about celebrating the newly-culminated Sinulog 2020 and how did they differentiate it to last year’s.


Eva Patalinjug

Eva Psychee Patalinjug, Binibining Pilipinas Grand International 2018 @evapatalinjug

I celebrated my Sinulog with my boyfriend and some of my close friends, we decided to choose a place where it’s not very crowded where we can see the whole Cebu, talk, and chill the night away. We went to Verified Lounge – Cebu’s newest premier sky lounge – located at the rooftop of the Avenir Building. It was something new for me as the night was calm as I was away from the busy streets of Cebu. It’s definitely one way of enjoying such festivities.


Kim Covert

Kim Covert @kimcovert

The Sinulog celebration this year has been one of the most memorable events in my life. Not only was I invited to perform a few of my own songs during the weekend’s festivities but I also turned over my Binibining Cebu Tourism crown to my successor. Last year, I was busy with work and was not able to completely grasp the events. This year’s festival was more organized which is a great success for Cebu. Many have flown in and had spent time with their families in the “Pit Senyor” spirit, others have enjoyed spending time off with friends and colleagues. It was a great way for me to start my New Year and close my Cebu chapter before I leave to the US in a week.


Alem Garcia

Alem Garcia @thealemgarcia

Well pretty much, I was still busy doing shows and events for Sinulog. But what made it different this year was the religious celebration made me believe even more that Sto. Niño is indeed miraculous and that He is meant to be celebrated. Even though you are successful in your chosen field, furthermore, everything will be meaningless if you do not have the faith.

Philip Pingoy


Philip Pingoy @almostablogger

We all have a Sinulog story to tell. It may be a story of losing faith and finding hope. But what is important is our devotion to the Holy Child Jesus (Señor. Sto. Niño). This year, my Sinulog experience was very different since I am already based in the United Kingdom. Thanks to the internet I was still able to watch the mass and all the festivities in Cebu. I am in UK because I prayed to Sto. Niño. So, let us not forget the reason we celebrate Sinulog and let us continue to share to the rest of the world why Sinulog is the grandest festival in the Philippines. Pit Senyor everyone! I hope you had a good one!


Lyssa Amor

Lyssa Amor @lyssaamor

Sinulog celebrates Filipinos’ acceptance of Christianity. This year, I celebrated Sinulog by hearing the word of God. I went to church which I do every Sinulog but the difference now is that I am not in Cebu. It’s my first time to celebrate Sinulog away from home because I’m currently in Japan. Although I didn’t dance the traditional Sinulog dance this year, I wasn’t able to watch the fireworks in Ayala, and didn’t spend time with my friends in Mango and IT Park. Snr. Sto. Niño will always be in my heart and I am forever grateful that our ancestors accepted Christianity and we continue to embrace it up until today.


Kevin Geniston @kgeniston

Sinulog will always be a highlight for me as a Cebuano. This year has been fulfilling as I was able to brave the crowd in the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu three times to attend the novena mass which had also become like bonding time with my family, daughter, friends and loved ones. I ended the celebration of the Sinulog festivities with a bit of the usual partying and/or clubbing.

Carlo Olano

Carlo Andrew Olano @kalamicebu

My Sinulog this year was a great mix of religious and secular activities. I was able to go to the church and somehow witnessed the Traslacion and the fluvial procession. I also went to many side events like parties, mall events, and fireworks exhibitions. Sinulog 2020 had a fantastic balance of fun, faith, and festivities.


Danna Bacolod

Danna Bacolod @dannabacolod

This is the second time I spent Sinulog with Cebu Pacific. We had series of events prepared during its entire week and participated the grand parade by having a float last Sunday. I always feel excited to join Sinulog Grand Parade and see a lot of people celebrating their own way of Sinulog along the streets of Cebu. Guess it’s safe to say that I had so much fun. Even if this was work-related, I didn’t feel like I’m actually working as it was always joyful doing events like these.


Nimo Scheming

Nimo Hideki @nimo_scheming

You prolly knew this already but, Sinulog 2020 was by far the most phenomenal Sinulog experience: more laidback than the previous years’. The music in every corner of the streets were still there to help you let loose and enjoy the experience. The surge of people had tested you both mentally and physically. But it was an experience you cannot miss like mingling with people from different walks of life and shouting out “Pit Senyor” to everyone. Summing up my Sinulog experience, I was able to get crazy and enjoy all aspects of the fest.


Michael Rey

Michael Rey @michaelsomewhere

I had the most relaxed Sinulog experience this year. I did not party and preferred to witness the grand parade instead. I do think that this year’s celebration was more colorful and much safer as establishments strictly abided the rules imposed by the Cebu City Government. I was also amazed at how the festival of fashion here in Cebu has evolved throughout the years.

Now, how about you? What are your #PostSinulogThoughts this Prititit 2020? Viva Pit Senyor!

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